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The Faculty (1998)

This is another amazing 90's 'Dimension Studios' horror film directed by Robert Rodriguez and from the ever so talented mind of screen writer Kevin Williamson, the man who brought us 'Scream', 'I Know What You Did Last Summer' and 'Halloween H20', to name a few. The casting here is insane, I had genuinely forgotten how many A-list actors are in this film - Josh Hartnett, Elijah Wood, Robert Patrick, Selma Hayek, Famke Janssen, Jordana Brewster and Clea DuVall and the list keeps on going. I don't think there is an unrecognisable face in this whole production. All playing the most generic High school students and teaching staff reflected in 90s pop culture, something I usually gripe about but for some reason it works here. This may be due to it feeling very at home with the self-aware horror films that Dimension studios were producing in the early to late 90s. Whilst this story feels like it has been told many times previously in films such as The Thing and Invasion of the Bodysnatchers, I don't think any of them make for a more enjoyable and entertaining watch as this. That is not to say this film is a better film, but with such incredible pacing and brilliantly curated score and soundtrack, this films run time flies. Once the credits started rolling I honestly could have started it again from the beginning and that is something I can't say for many other films. Sadly, the CGI is very dated and if being honest I can't remember being particularly impressed upon its release. This never once bothered me though and certainly didn't ruin my viewing experience. There are a few moments of impressive practical work and make-up effects, most notably the slugs in the face of Elijah Wood's character withing the final minutes. I will say I did like the almost holographic CGI effect used to show the Parasite taking in the rain water when Robert Patrick is stood in the field with the rest of the football team, but other than that majority of it isn't great. There is a moment of 'what the fuck' in the closing act where our main Parasite has a tentacles monster shadow whilst in human form, something upon first glance I thought looked very impressive. However, it makes very little logical sense and I think that is my biggest take away from this film. It never once felt like it is trying to take itself too seriously and knew its market and audience and catered to them perfectly. For me, this is an almost flawless film that I would consider to be the ultimate introduction into horror, the film you would recommend to friend who isn't quite ready to experience the true darker side of cinema.


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