Peeping Tom (1960)

Oatmeal cooking in the micro. Just finished watching Peeping Tom, Michael Powell’s controversial 1960 horror film. Considered to be a pre-cursor to the slasher genre, the film destroyed Powell’s career for it’s commentary on sadism, voyeurism and entertainment (Hitchcock’s Psycho came 3 months later – ignited similar controversy – but was lauded). Powell’s favorite review of the film was

The only really satisfactory way to dispose of Peeping Tom would be to shovel it up and flush it swiftly down the nearest sewer.  Even then the stench would remain.

This is one of those films I’d read about as a kid and had always wanted to see. This was back when I read and re-read the NYU Tisch School of Arts undergraduate catalog, dreaming of becoming a film director (theatre turned out to be a much quicker fix… and then later on: blogging). The film is deliberately paced compared to today’s over-edited shockers but it has a few worthwhile gasps and great ending. It reminded me of key scenes from Strange Days, that misanthropic millienial fever-dream from Kathryn Bigelow – that one sequence still troubles me – and you know which one I mean.

(from Sunday night)

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