Kissing Covens: I watch “The Sisterhood of Night”

Despite the title, spooky cover, and synopsis (ARE OUR TEENS IN A WITCH SEX CULT? HAVE GAYS BURGLED BRITAIN'S SWANS?) this is not a horror film. It isn't an update of The Craft, although in some ways its atmosphere is reminiscent of that movie. It's a modern riff on The Crucible--the Deadly Doll called it "The Teencible"--based on a short story by notable male mammal and odd duck Stephen Millhauser.And it's also the closest fictional depiction I can think of to what it was like to be in Riot … [Read more...]

A Friend in Need: “Creep”

Shortly after I submitted my 2015 horror round-up aka every Halloween is self-parody Halloween, I found myself thinking, You know, maybe I only think contemporary indie horror doesn't do enough male vulnerability because I still haven't seen Creep.Now I've seen Creep and boy howdy, I was right.This is a truly skin-crawly, high-tension film about the increasingly uncomfortable relationship between Josef and the younger man, Aaron, whom he hires to film him for a day. We know the title of … [Read more...]

PJ Harvey’s New Album Will Be (Partly) DC-Themed!!

Teenage me would be so obnoxious right now: The album was created in conjunction with a museum exhibition staged in London. Travels to Kosovo, Afghanistan, and Washington, D.C. with photographer/filmmaker Seamus Murphy inspired the songs, and titles include "River Anacostia" and "Near the Memorials to Vietnam and Lincoln." The compositions coincided with a poetry book, The Hollow of The Hand. more … [Read more...]

“Too Much Reality”: Martyn Wendell Jones reviews my novel

at the University Bookman: Eve Tushnet’s self-published debut novel Amends is at full gallop out of the gate:J. Malachi MacCool was born in Berkeley, California, in the last decade of the Cold War, to parents who deserved better. He had a dilapidated body and a face like the last days of the Raj: jowly, discredited, eager for the final defeat.[…] His favorite term of praise was “civilizational,” and he lived by the creed, “Alcoholism is what raises man above the utilitarians.” The J stood fo … [Read more...]

“Last Year’s Horror Cornucopia: Suffering in Style”: I’m at First Things

every Halloween is self-parody Halloween: Last night I watched The Final Girls, Todd Strauss-Schulson's 2015 slasher parody about mourning. It's charming, touching, and mostly successful—and a great example of the reasons 2015 specifically and the '10s generally have been such great years for horror fans. 2015 was just a cornucopia of bloody fruit: the lush Gothic fantasy of Guillermo del Toro's Crimson Peak, David Cronenberg's nihilistic satire/poignant ghost story Maps to the Stars, and J … [Read more...]

“Carol” and the New Morality

I saw Carol, the Todd Haynes/Patricia Highsmith '5os lesbian drama, at the tail end of last year. I haven't written about it until now because it was so jagged--parts really worked, although I wasn't sure I wanted them to, and the remainder was so off-putting that I just didn't feel like talking about it. But writing that review of Rat Bohemia helped me figure out why the film didn't work for me: It's really two movies, set in two entirely different moral universes.In the first universe … [Read more...]

“Exterminatrix”: I review Sarah Schulman’s “Rat Bohemia”

for AmCon: I spent last weekend at the Gay Christian Network Conference in Houston, and I needed something to read on the plane. Something short, punchy, an in-flight entertainment that could keep my attention after an event that is equal parts spiritually uplifting and emotionally harrowing. I threw Sarah Schulman’s Rat Bohemia into my bag and grinned as I set my alarm for 1995. More fool me.Rat Bohemia is in some ways the scathing nostalgia trip I was hoping for. It’s sometimes a satire of … [Read more...]