In this week's Field Notes From Hell: Thoughts on the freshly wrapped EPIX series, 'From,' early raves for Ti West's 'X,' and new horror trailers.
Welcome to Field Notes From Hell—the weekly roundup email from my twisted newsletter, Deep Cuts. Each dispatch contains key horror news, thoughts on recent horror films, and personal life updates.
Here are this week’s Field Notes:
From is a Lost-esque mystery with bite
Speculative TV seems hell-bent on reliving the glory (and eventual strife) brought by Lost. Between this and Yellowjackets, the interest for weird, communal mysteries has all but resurged.
Where the latter tries to occupy its own space, however, the former is outwardly determined to recapture the magic of Damon Lindelof & co.’s seminal piece of television. The premise is textbook Lost, tinged with a bit of small-town Stephen King stroke: a townful of individuals (coming from all points across the United States) are stranded in a mysterious patch of land.
There’s much to uncover, from the ghouls that plague the town’s evenings to the clashing philosophies of the Town and the Colony House. It’s enough to look past the obvious callbacks and few contrivances and keep nestled at the edge of your seat to uncover the show’s mystery.
X is (to no one’s surprise) really good
Reviews are in for Ti West’s X, a slasher about sleazy porn-makers starring Mia Goth and Jenna Ortega.
I’ve had my vulture-like leer on this film since it was announced, and I knew it was going to draw praises or at least arch some curious eyebrows. Between The House of the Devil, The Innkeepers, and In the Valley of Violence, you can’t say that West wasn’t going to turn up with a good time of a slasher.
Critics who have seen it early seem to agree. “X is surface-level entertainment — focused more on having fun than telling a good story — but still a satisfying piece of indie horror filmmaking that’s worth taking a chance on,” notes Deadline’s Valerie Complex.
A.O. Scott calls the film “an unexpected gift,” saying: “West, unlike his pornographers, has things to say as well as bodies to show. Most of all, he has an aesthetic that isn’t all about terror or titillation. X is full of dreamy, haunting overhead shots and moments of surprising tenderness.”
Latest horror news and trailers
I’ve seen a handful of interesting horror trailers this week, from Hulu’s truth-based horror-thriller, Candy, starring Jessica Biel, to Shudder’s supernatural mystery The Cellar, starring Elisha Cuthbert. There’s also Chloe Okuno’s Watcher, a Maika Monroe-starring chiller set in Romania.
Watch this week’s horror trailers:
Keep abreast of the latest horror news:
Let’s get one thing out of the way: 🔪 Scream 6 is happening. It’s already underway for March 2023!
😱 Shudder is kicking off Halloween season early with a film event called “Halfway to Halloween” — featuring original and exclusive horror films.
Nothing to see here, just photos from Jordan Peele’s 🐴 Nope: