I'll cop to it. My involvement in Shock Cinema of late has been purely technical. I'd apologize, but proofing and printing and shipping is what gets the issue into your hands. I have a stack of unwatched films to show for it, too! But we're already picking out titles for me to review for both this blog and issue #39.
Every now and again I do manage to squeeze a film in while I'm working away at deadline pace on my freelance-gig-of-the-month. This week it was Pontypool. It reminded me of Kiyoshi Kurasawa's Pulse, in so much as it uses horror/genre settings to say something bigger about society. It's a small film, it takes place in one room of one building and rarely gives a glimpse of anything further -- but still implies devastating impact. It's a stunt many low budget films try to pull and fail. In the case of Pontypool, illustrating the chaos would only have taken away from the claustrophobic character study that is it. It works. On every level it works perfectly. Bruce McDonald never falls too far on the shlocky end nor sways too artsy. It helps that novelist Tony Burgess adapted his own book for the film. Stephen McHattie keeps everything moving and holds attention right through to the end. Lisa Houle manages not to be as annoying as the role calls out to be in the wrong hands. I haven't read Pontypool Changes Everything but I have a feeling I will....
So that's it, my Netflicks pick of the moment.
On a related thread, wow - Stephen McHattie is in everything I have watched over the last ten years!