Tuesday, October 09, 2012
31 Days of Halloween - Day 9 - Movie
In Viy (1967) Khoma, a student at a monastery is summoned by a rich cossack's beautiful daughter whose dying wish is for his to read prayers over her corpse for three nights. Khoma, reluctant to do so, is afraid, and rightly so since the dead girl is actually a witch who terrorizes him each of the nights, putting his faith to the test.
An adaptation of the short story of the same title by Nikolai Gogol, this Russian film captures the feeling of a folk tale, both in its succinct storytelling and running time, and in its imagery. The film is beautiful to look at and delivers some memorable inventive visuals including Khoma being ridden by an old witch early in the movie and the strange monochromatic demons that the witch summons against Khoma in the film's stunning climax.
Viy was a real, and welcome, treat this season when so many of the movies I've watched over this year's countdown have been adequate at best. It's going to be hard for anything else I watch this month to beat it.