Everything so far announced on Cobweb by Lionsgate marks each box of a long-awaited horror movie on the horizon. First of all, Chris Thomas Devlin’s screenplay is at the top of the 2018 Blood List, an annual list of the best non-production genre feature films of the year voted on by industry leaders. Producers such as Roy Lee (It, Doctor Sleep), Jon Berg (Wonder Woman, Doctor Sleep) and Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg (This is the End, The Boys, Preacher) are included. Even the log line sounds fascinating: Peter has always been told that the voice he hears at night is only in his head, but when he suspects that his parents have lied, he conspires to free the girl within the walls of his house. This is exactly the kind of premise that seems perfect for the new director Samuel Bodin, the creator/director/co-scriptwriter of Netflix’s French series Marianne.
Marianne followed bestselling author Emma Larsimon (Victoire Du Bois) when she is forced to return home to confront her past, when the witch who haunts her books and nightmares terrorizes her waking life. In the course of Emma’s literary career, the witch of the same name, Marianne, found her way to new things through the pages of books. When this path is closed, it physically manifests itself in Emma’s life to challenge the writer to keep telling her evil heroes. Bodin immediately made sure that the audience understood how threatening and extremely frightening this evil witch could be. Of all the memorable moments of horror, earthquakes and goosebumps, in the second episode there is one unforgettable horror that stands above all others. We can’t get it out of our heads.
In the era of continuous television, series are often designed for simple consumption, a long narrative arc whose chapters are divided into digestible pieces that follow each other without interruption. But as with comedy, horror also requires precise timing. It’s hard enough to create fear and a disturbing atmosphere in a feature film, and it’s even harder in a series of about six hours. Big horror shows are rarely scary. But Bodin made it look so easy. More than that, he used the drinking format as a weapon.
The first five minutes of the second episode, Tradition, produce one of the most terrifying fears of the recent past. The fear alone, which triggers the episode, is enough to make you sleep with a nightlight. Even more impressive is the way Boden uses the climax of the previous episode to keep the rotation forward and increase the tension to an unbearable level.
The first one, Your Dreams, didn’t leave enough time to capture Marianne’s many main characters, the scenery and the scary world. Emma, who is often unpleasant, dragged her besieged assistant Camile (Lucie Boujenah) on her way home. After a series of uncomfortable and completely bizarre encounters with the inhabitants, in which Mrs Daugeron (Mireille Herbstmeyer) also meets the locals, the two meet at Emma’s parental home on the outskirts of town. There’s bad blood between Emma and, well, everyone else, which makes poor Camile’s stay even more uncomfortable. Your dreams end with Camile’s unexpected meeting with Emma’s parents in the middle of the night. The last ten minutes end exciting and let the adrenaline level rise.
Camile gets up to go to the toilet, which is disorienting in such a massive and poorly lit house. She soon realizes that she is not the only one who is awake – Emma’s parents are walking around, naked and in a hypnotic convulsion. Emma’s father attacks Camile, then both parents wander into the woods, set off the alarm and finally wake Emma. The screen turns black and the credits start to roll when he is surprised by a jump; Emma is hit by her father knocking her unconscious. A simple but disturbing scene because of the tension and the screaming alarm sirens.
When the second episode starts, you’d think she’d jump forward to revive Emma and give the viewer room to breathe. It’s not that. Instead, she focuses again on Camile, who now lives alone in the spacious house and is deeply shocked. She has the guts to go downstairs, calls Emma because of the screaming alarm and notices that the back door is wide open. Then the alarm goes off and the phone rings. Poor Camile walks down a dark corridor to answer the phone. Shadows reach out to him and the staging shows Camile’s vulnerability in the open air; his back almost always points to dark, empty spaces where something is probably lurking, waiting to strike. When she picks up the phone, the representative of the alarm company on the other line has to release part of the voltage. …but she doesn’t.
This reassuring voice tries to calm Camile down before telling him to close the back door and lock it. She does. Then tell her to look behind her. The house alarm may have stopped screaming, but his internal alarm still sounds. The representative’s voice is distorted and turns into a woman. Daugeron’s. She’s there, waiting around the corner for Camile to see her. Her eyes change, music is played and a lot of horrors sound, until Emma breaks the tension by banging on the back door.
Bodin shoots a long series past the last moments of the first episode until the beginning of the next, without delay. It is a series of fears at different levels of fear. The strange and unnatural behaviour of Emma’s parents is disturbing, making Camile’s fear of water fish even greater. The parents move into a trance-like state, but give in to sudden bursts of unpredictable aggression. This will allow us to continue. The decor, full of wide open but dark rooms, looks like a small fish in a black sea of swirling predators. Evil is getting closer and closer, but it’s not clear where it’s coming from.
Offering a safety net and then tearing it off is a proven deterrent tactic and Bodin makes good use of this by swinging comfortably in front of Camile in the form of a friendly and authoritative voice on the phone. The meticulous pace of this scene and Camile’s movements draw the tension almost to the point of panic.
It is also interesting to note that the whole series revolves around Camile, the dear stranger. Emma is immediately portrayed as an assertive and dominant personality, and one of her favorite pastimes is putting pressure on her nice assistant. This seemingly endless layering of fears begins when Camile wakes up in the middle of the night and carefully ventures into the strange place where she is. It ends when Emma reappears at the back door and finally gives her and us a chance to calm our high heartbeat.
Bodin stretches the horror for fifteen minutes, and that’s not the only horror he uses on Marianne. When he has brought so much terror together in an eight-episode series, it’s exciting to think about what he can achieve in a feature film.bloody disgusting films,bloody disgusting us