For a movie that didn’t make its budget
back at the box office, was reviewed terribly at the time and which critics
haven’t warmed to in retrospect; it’s curious that we’re still talking about
Event Horizon. But we are. Critics don’t have the last say and the box-office
isn’t everything. Event Horizon is a film that has never been forgotten, has a
dedicated following and has made a lasting impact on pop-culture. Easily Paul W.S.
Anderson’s most enduring film, Event Horizon is a standalone opus of dread.
Similar to The Exorcist, the movie
developed a reputation as something taboo and dirty. Something you shouldn’t
look directly at but somehow you can’t help yourself.
With its frantic visions of an
extra-dimensional hell, a sense of evil pervades this movie. From the design of
the ship, which seems to have malevolence in its very shape, to the soundscape
of torturous ecstasy which kick starts the mystery; there is a sense of
building dread throughout. By the time the demons arrive, that dread has
painted itself across the screen in gore red tones. So much so that there were
reports of vomiting audiences at the test screening. Again, like The Exorcist.
There is a real texture to the horror which makes for a visceral experience,
which viewers don’t forget.
It didn’t win Oscars, and there’s no
point pretending it’s a masterpiece. But, like The Exorcist, the devil lives