Horror in three dimensions




Come take a dose of the best of horror cinema from the 1970s from three continents: Europe, America and Australia. The Brood, The Wicker Man, and Picnic at Hanging Rock form three dissimilar journeys, whose common denominator is the invisible madness of Western societies.


Horror is a monster

Here we have The Brood (1979), or the treatment by a psychiatrist who allows his patients to embody their diseases in order to get rid of them; the problem is that he failed to foresee the devastating side effects... Elegant Canadian filmmaker David Cronenberg tracks the distortion of very proper people. The genius idea of this horrific thriller is to imagine that if all the psychoses of attractive people materialised, the world would be in chaos because human thought is limitless.



Horror is an absence

Here we have Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975), or the disappearance of young girls during an outing in the heart of the Bush in 1900. Nothing is more distressing than knowing nothing. By putting the slender bodies of adolescent girls in front of a massive mountain, not dark, but on the contrary, overexposed with blinding white light, Australian filmmaker Peter Weir ushers in all levels of fantasy. Here, horror operates by fascination, hypnosis exercised by danger, the real kind, the kind that we cannot explain, yet keep moving towards.



Horror is a comedy

Here we have The Wicker Man (1973), where a principled detective has come to an island to investigate the disappearance of a young girl. Welcome to the nave of madness, imagined by British filmmaker Robin Hardy. With Hardy, the devil is in the details. You must watch everything very carefully in this film, from the grimacing people, to the atrocious pastries that make you smile - before making you uncomfortable. A work of collective madness with a very small man across you, The Wicker Man is a dance in the style of James Ensor; people in disguise hide a much more frightening face behind their masks.


Wicker Man Photo


Virginie Apiou



The Brood by David Cronenberg (1979, 1h32, Prohibited for ages under 16)
A woman undergoes therapy with a psychiatrist who employs secret methods. The side effects turn out to be particularly violent… An extraordinary work that marked the history of horror films.
Re-release in 2021
Cinéma Opéra Sun.11 9:15pm | UGC Confluence Wed. 14 9pm | Institut Lumière Fri. 16 10:30pm


Picnic at Hanging Rock by Peter Weir (1975, 1h47)
During a school outing, young girls venture out to a rock, an ancient place of worship of the aborigines. Some of them disappear… A film of a flamboyant and haunting beauty, met with great public success.
Cinéma Opéra Sun. 11 6:15pm | Villeurbanne Mon. 12 8:30pm | Comœdia Sun. 18 11:15am


The Wicker Man by Robin Hardy (1973, 1h34)
A detective visits a remote island to investigate the disappearance of a little girl. He discovers that the local population is engaged in strange rituals… A true oddity, strange and magnificent, punctuated with scenes of pagan worship, with a psychedelic folk soundtrack.
Re-release on November 4, 2020
Institut Lumière Sat. 10 8:30pm | Lumière Terreaux Mon. 12 10pm | UGC Confluence Fri. 16 8:45pm



Categories: Lecture Zen