Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Flowers in the Attic - DVD review

"There's something about innocent children being held captive and abused by people they are supposed to look up to and trust that touches a very large and unpleasant nerve. The idea of parents as monsters represents an almost quintessential evil in people." - Wes Craven from the book "Nightmares in Red, White and Blue: The Evolution of the American Horror Film" by Joseph Maddrey.

The film was made in 1987 of V.C. Andrew's Flowers in the Attic that still has many readers mesmerized(most hate the movie too). In the film you have the under-rated actress Kristy Swanson as the main character, Cathy. Now many will say this was a complete miss-cast film. But truly, I can't think of anyone quite playing Cathy as innocent yet strong as Kristy Swanson, who later made the movie Buffy the Vampire Slayer. On the other hand, well, the make-up was a lot to be desired. But what a beautiful set and the rooms, gothic and chilling as four siblings have to make a home in such insane circumstances.

Victoria Tennant as their mother. Louise Fletcher as the grandmother they never knew.

You've got the scary Louise Fletcher as the grandmother that the children have to stay with after the death of their father when their mother has no place to go. Of course, the earlier parts show such a sugar sweet family. But it starts to fall apart when they are locked away from their mother who has to earn her father's respect again. So they take refuge in the attic of the huge estate. There seems to be no way out.

Cathy took a lot of baths in this movie.

Christopher played the perfect older brother by Jeb Adams, has the conflict within, wondering how long they can last under these conditions. Of course, the grandmother, tells them terrible things about their father and mother. There is that gothic theme of incest that plagues the movie, but it is PG-13.

"I would not classify Flowers in the Attic as a horror film. It's a good old-fashioned escape story..." Wes Craven went on to say about V.C. Andrews tale in Screams & Nightmares: The Films of Wes Craven. I've heard rumored that Craven had written a script, but they'd told him it was too dark. Maybe some day, his script will re-invent this story. Of course, there hasn't been any word that he might try to remake this movie. If so, I hope Jamie Campbell Bower gets dibs on Chris if Hannah Murray is Cathy. They'd make true siblings.

I won't say the acting is perfect in the movie. But it does have several twists and turns. And there is the realization of the horror of their situation. It will make one wonder how something so close to home could go wrong. Yet, these kind of stories do exist in our society. And its this kind of tale that can be fear that one can't keep from reading about. Especially, in the Dollanger series. After all, Flowers in the Attic was the original book that created legions of fans.

The worldly and heartless lie in wait for the naive and innocent. We were young and vulnerable, weak, half-sick, but no longer naive or innocent.
Flower's in the Attic

Its worth checking out. Especially, Kristy in all those romantic clothes of the 80's.

STORYLINE: After the death of her husband, a mother takes her kids off to live with their grandparents in a huge, decrepit old mansion. However, the kids are kept hidden in a room just below the attic, visited only by their mother who becomes less and less concerned about them and their failing health, and more concerned about herself and the inheritance she plans to win back from her dying father, to the point of murder...



cady said...

This definitely sounds worth watching.

ellie's desk said...

If you see the movie first, you'll want to read the book. But if you've read the book, the movie doesn't quite unravel everything you wanted to see. Still, many fans love the setting the most...when it comes to this movie.

Cafe Fashionista said...

I would love to both see the film and read the book - I have heard so many incredible things about both! :)

Florence said...

Thanks for your dear coment
i want to read the book so badly!

Krystal said...

i think i have read that book!

Holly said...

Lots of twist and turns in that story. I like Kristy in this better than as Buffy.

griffin said...

If more could have happened between cathy n chris in the movie, it would have been so much better.

crobl005 said...

The actress playing Cathy did a very good job in the movie, she even won an award for it.