Movies, Horror, and Monstrosity

In a recent study, literature scholar and monster expert Leo Braudy outlines four major types of monsters:  1) The “monster from nature” who reflects our fears of losing control over the natural world. 2) Monsters that reflect human concerns with science and its power. 3) The “Jekyll and Hyde monster,” doppelganger figures that represent the ways that many people live double lives, or have more than one “true” self. 4) Monsters that serve to interrupt our modern developments and changes (especially those that somehow return from the past). For part one of your blogpost, I’d like you to discuss how a monster you viewed during your filmwork for this week fits within one of Braudy’s four over-arching categories. Whether you choose a creature from a horror film or a “classic” monster movie, I’d like you to explore how/why your chosen monster fits into one of these categories and thus works to “indulge our fears and desires” (to quote Braudy).

Sadly, this will be your final blogpost of the semester. Therefore, I thought this would be a good opportunity to make some final connections and draw some over-arching conclusions about your work this spring. So, for part two, I’d like you, again, to discuss a specific movie monster you screened in preparing for class this week – but preferably a different beast than you considered in part one. For this section, I’d simply like you to connect your monster to certain creatures, themes, and ideas we have covered previously this semester, and see what broad conclusions you can draw about movie monsters through these connections. Since this is your last blogpost of the semester, how does your selected cinematic beast tie into some of the key historical, social, and political ideas of the course, and what overall conclusions does it point to with regards to monsters and monstrosity? That is the question I would like you to answer here.