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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Hosteler-Bondager Convergence


"So, um, is having a thin rag tied in your mouth considered "breakfast" in this part of Europe? Because this is so not what I have in mind when I think "bed and breakfast."


The image above is from the mainstream horror film Hostel 2.

Some have attepted to redefine Hostel 2 as "torture porn" but I'm not buying it because horror movies have always been full of grisly images of human being experiencing prolonged, agonizing torment, often followed by death. It doesn't seem to me that in the case of movies like Hostel 2 the fact that it's a human being rather than a supernatural being or event that is the cause of all the misery isn't an important distinction to make. They all suck equally in that regard.

(Full disclosure: I haven't seen Nightmare on Elm Street or any of its sequels, I haven't seen any Texas Chainsaw Massacre film, I HAVE seen Halloween but not any of its sequels. I haven't seen any of the Hellraiser films though I have seen a couple of nice-sized chunks of Hellraiser III (the one with Terry Farrell in the head harness) ... oh, the list of horror movie's I've not seen is long. I'm just not into SM, apparently unlike most horror movie fans.)

ANYWAY, so Hostel 2 is a mainstream horror film by any reasonable definition of the term. And the thing is, this vidcap from Hostel 2 could have easily come from many commercial bondage sites, especially those that feature lots of clothed bondage.

Really, look at the two hotties from Hostel 2. Imagine if you saw them tied up on a sofa or a bed in a motel room, exactly as they are tied now. You'd be thinking David Knight. You'd be thinking FM Concepts. Really, look at them, hands tied behind, sporting thin cleave gags, both bound hands behind, and both bound at the waist and feet.

The difference between the bondage imagery found in mainstream films, especially horror films, and the bondage imagery found on commercial bondage site, continues to dwindle.

4 comments:

kdnpr said...

"Some have attepted to redefine Hostel 2 as "torture porn" but I'm not buying it...
(Full disclosure: ...the list of horror movie's I've not seen is long."


I have seen the Nightmares and the Chainsaw massacre.
You're correct in that they really the same plot as Hostels

kdnpr said...

"the fact that it's a human being rather than a supernatural being or event that is the cause of all the misery isn't an important distinction to make."

Actually, it might. Nightmares likely had some FX boys employed, where Hostels doesn't appear so. I don't think the Hostels had recognisable actors in them? Comes across as a cheap production

They do use "Porn". And other than sexual plots, the porn term is used for making quick profit productions with young and unrecognisable cheap labour

"Torture" though, Freddy tortured everyone in the Nightmares Films so I don't see that?

Interesting post Pat

Pat Powers said...

I have seen the Nightmares and the Chainsaw massacre.
You're correct in that they really the same plot as Hostels

I think some folks want to establish that these films are different in some important way from other films so they can call to censor them without endangering regular horror movies. I don't think it'll work because most non-horror fans aren't likely to be interested in such fine distinction.

Pat Powers said...

Actually, it might. Nightmares likely had some FX boys employed, where Hostels doesn't appear so. I don't think the Hostels had recognisable actors in them? Comes across as a cheap production.

Well, it's not like the horror genre is known for high-end productions.

They do use "Porn". And other than sexual plots, the porn term is used for making quick profit productions with young and unrecognisable cheap labour

"Torture" though, Freddy tortured everyone in the Nightmares Films so I don't see that?


You don't see it because you don't have an agenda that makes you want to see it, whether it's there or not. What I think is really troubling the reviewers I mentioned is that movies like Hostel 2 is using imagery that is obviously borrowed from commercial bondage porn. I mean, Heather Matarazzo tied up upside down, naked and gagged? Bijou Phillips strapped to a chair and wearing a ballgag? It makes 'em uncomfortable, so they want it banned.