2020.10.29 15:16 Sons_of_the_Desert Voyuer feet
Basic plot: A reporter (Jennifer Salt) witnesses the disturbed twin sister of a model (Margot Kidder) murdering a man in her apartment. When the police refuse to take her claims seriously, she investigates it herself and finds out some horrifying secrets.
Although generally well-regarded, Brian De Palma's horror film Sisters (1973) hasn't been widely recognized for what it quite arguably is- one of De Palma's very best films, and one of the greatest horror films ever made. Part of this is because it's often been viewed as a clever and canny work of cinematic homage and pastiche. It's a reworking of Psycho (1960) which incorporates elements of other Alfred Hitchcock films (Rope, Rear Window, The Lady Vanishes), as well as some of those of Roman Polanski (Repulsion, Rosemary's Baby). It also includes specific visual nods to certain Hitchcock films (Rebecca, the 1934 version of The Man Who Knew Too Much), as well as some non-Hitchcock films (Island of Lost Souls).
While Sisters is obviously a work of cinematic homage to a certain extent, the focus on this element above others obscures some very important things about the film. It's a work that mixes and combines elements of its inspirations in order to create something new and unique, and changes and recontextualizes what it borrows from in order to create very different meanings and effects. Its plot structure hews very closely to that of Psycho and it hits all of its major story beats- the insane relative, the brutal, unexpected murder, the revelation that said relative is dead-, but it shifts their order and changes their narrative context, as well as many details, so that many of them aren't immediately obvious, and those that are have different functions in the story.
Sisters is ultimately a transformative work: it takes the basic story elements and many of the themes of Psycho and creates a new, original work which is different in terms of tone, meaning, and intent. It's one of only a handful of horror films inspired by Psycho which has been able to match it or top it in any way. It's a work that's arguably darker and more grotesque than Psycho, more disturbing and frightening, whose implications are even more deeply unsettling. It works best if one has seen Psycho, and assumes that the viewer is familiar with it, but is able to stand on its own two feet, and works even if one hasn't seen the Hitchcock film.
De Palma has often been accused of being a Hitchcock wannabe, but what he actually does is use certain Hitchcock films as inspiration for works which are very different stylistically, tonally, and thematically. (Take the case of Mission: Impossible , which takes inspiration from The 39 Steps  and North by Northwest .) While there are certain similarities in terms of sensibility, De Palma's directorial voice is very different from that of Hitchcock, and is unique and distinct.
One of the biggest differences between the two is that while Hitchcock tends to focus on the dark and perverse side of individuals, De Palma tends to take aim at society as a whole and particular institutions. A great example of this is the voyuerism-themed game show that opens Sisters, which manages to both darkly funny and unsettling enough to create a sense of unease. De Palma tends to take a jaundiced view of the institutions and power structures of American society, and Sisters is one of the most radical examples of this. The police refuse to take Grace (Jennifer Salt) seriously when she says that she witnessed a murder because the victim was a black man, and one of the officers threatens to find something to book her on if she keeps bothering him. (It's a testament to how relevant the film still feels, and how depressing that this is the case, that this feels like it could take place nearly 50 years after the film was made.)
Sisters is probably De Palma's most thorough portrait of the dysfunction of American society. No one in a position of authority is at all helpful, and are either hostile or oblivious: they either realize their mistakes only when it's too late, or lack the awareness to realize them at all. The film's world is one in which the most decent, upright character suffers the cruelest fate, and the heroine's combination of idealism and hubris ends up doing her in. It's also one in which to be a black man is to have one's life treated like it doesn't matter, and to be a woman is to be dismissed or marginalized. Sisters is unusual among horror films in that "normality" has no positive connotations, and no force or vigor.
A key difference between De Palma and Hitchcock is that De Palma is willing to go farther in terms of graphic violence, and present in with a greater degree of savagery. As brutal and disturbing as it is, the shower scene in Psycho has a certain kind of aesthetic restraint. De Palma's analogue to it in Sisters, only the other hand, is much bloodier and more graphic, as well as far more vicious and sadistic. It's one of the most brutally terrifying deaths in all of horror cinema, and also ranks among the most horrific and unpleasant.
De Palma does just as well at updating the horror film as Hitchcock did with Psycho. Sisters gives its horror a contemporary urban setting (its New York locale gives it a distinct flavor), with modern environments (the apartment of a model, an experimental sanitarium) in place of creepy old houses. It's very much a post-Psycho, post-Night of the Living Dead (1968) horror film: it reflects the horror film's then-burgeoning social consciousness, and is far darker, more disturbing, and downbeat than the traditional (pre-Psycho) horror film. De Palma approaches the horror film's traditional fascination with freaks and outsiders in a way that's much darker and more grotesque than earlier horror films, as well as far bleaker and more downbeat: it suggests that the abnormal person has no real place in a society that cruelly mocks them and sets them apart from others, but that it's even worse to try to disown one's abnormality and become "normal"- that a part of oneself is killed in the process, and the results are nothing less than monstrous.
De Palma makes excellent use of Hitchcock's trick from Psycho of making the early portions of the film not seem like a horror film: it starts off relatively normal, but the sense of creepiness and unease steadily builds (Emil stalking Danielle, Dominique's rage at Danielle having a man sleep over) until it climaxes in the first murder. De Palma's also uses of Psycho's gambit of being a suspense thriller as well as a horror film, which helps add a lot of tension. One of the best sequences in the film is De Palma's version of the scene of the crime being cleaned up: he adds extra tension by having Emil (William Finley) race against time before the police show up, and uses split-screen to counterpose him cleaning up the aftermath of the murder with Grace struggling to get the police to go up to Danielle's apartment. De Palma also includes a lot of humor in the film, some of it dark (the Peeping Toms game show), and some of it lighthearted (Grace accidentally dropping a piece of evidence that bolsters her case) in a way which serves the leaven the more disturbing and grotesque aspects. However, all of the film's humor- the way Grace's mother tries to give her unwanted "helpful" advice, the way private detective Larch (Charles Durning) dismisses Grace's objections to his harebrained schemes- reinforces the disenchanted view it takes toward American society, as well as its fundamentally downbeat thematic. This extends to the film's humorous closing shot, which reflects the bleakness of the narrative.
During the third act the film drops the suspense aspect entirely and pivots to being a balls-to-the-wall horror film; it's during this section that it reaches its greatest heights, as well as when it's at its most darkly terrifying and profoundly unsettling. Themes of manipulation and control are central to this portion of the film, and it expresses them visually with imagery taken directly from the third act of Rosemary's Baby (1968). (These scenes are quite arguably more deeply unnerving and unsettling than the ones they take inspiration from in the Polanski film.) Rather than having it explained through a speech the way Psycho did, the film instead opts to expound on the origin of the killer's psychosis through a stylized, black-and-white flashback scene. The obvious inspiration for it are the childhood flashbacks in Marnie (1964), but it goes much further, resulting in a sequence which is genuinely surreal, grotesque, and nightmarish. It's one of the most unnerving scenes in all of horror cinema, as well as one of the great setpieces in De Palma's work.
However, the element most responsible for making the third act of the film as frightening and disturbing as it is is the force with which De Palma illustrates male domination and control of women. The great critic Robin Wood once described Sisters as "the definitive feminist horror film," and that's a very apt description: women are either dismissed or marginalized at best, or are subject to attempts to control them at worst. (It's noteworthy that the film's violence is perpetrated exclusively by women against men.) This is most evident in Emil's attempts to control both Grace and Danielle (Margot Kidder). Many of Hitchcock's greatest films feature men who try to dominate women in some way (Vertigo, Psycho, Marnie); Emil is a potent variation on this theme, and a figure whose domination of women is more profoundly disturbing. He's a misogynist of the most insidious kind: although sincere, his love for Danielle is fundamentally selfish and self-serving, and he seeks to control or eliminate any woman who gets in his way (like Grace). He desperately wants to control the adverse situations he faces, but lacks the awareness to realize that his own actions are the cause of them.
Wood said that the film shows male domination of women to be invariably misguided and destructive, and this is evident in De Palma's treatment of the other male characters: the police detective is dismissive of Grace's claims and attacks her for reporting on police abuse, and Larch treats her with condescension and acts like she doesn't know anything about private investigation. De Palma's treatment of Emil, as well as the dark, obsessive energies associated with him, is one of the elements most responsible for the film feeling truly Hitchcockian.
Sisters is one of the great films of the "cinema of pessimism" of the '70's. It refuses to provide any easy answers to the questions it raises, or produce an easy scapegoat even in the case of its most obviously monstrous character (Emil). Although its finale is less explosive than those of many of the great films of "'70's horror" (Night of the Living Dead, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, God Told Me To), it's one of the ones that has the greatest power and force, and is at once frightening, tragic, and darkly funny. Its conclusion is one of a bleak hopelessness, albeit without the raw nihilism of that of Night of the Living Dead (1968): it suggests that American society is broken beyond repair, and that there's no way to set right the things which are fundamentally wrong.
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2020.08.04 03:38 please_andthanky0u Voyuer feet
Hey y’all! I have kind of a silly post/question. My new husband and I are trying to find “stay at home” friendly ways to celebrate our wedding/new marriage, as we weren’t able to have the traditional wedding/honeymoon we planned for. We decided, with spending so much time at home together, this is a great time to explore some new kinks. We have engaged very lightly in a few kinks we knew we had interest in (light bondage, d/s play, role play, voyuerism, exhibitionism, among others) and we’ve found a random A-Z list of kinks. I think we plan to make our own A-Z list and maybe taking a couple of weeks per kink to really explore the different ways it could be practiced.
My question is, does anyone who has engaged in any of these types of play or have any suggestions for how/what to explore? Something particularly underrated about a kink that we should definitely try before moving on to the next one? For example, I’m sure exploring a foot fetish takes more than rubbing someone’s feet during sex or attempting a foot job; what are other forms of foot worship we shouldn’t skip over?
Additionally, does anyone have alternative suggestions for any of the letters A-Z? There is a kink list in the FAQ, but what it links to no longer exists. No shade to any particular kink, there are just a few on here that we know already we aren’t really into so we’re looking for multiple options.
I’d love any suggestions!
Kinks listed below, they came from a magazine article we stumbled across that sparked this idea: A-age play B-bondage C-cuckolding D-dominance E-electrostimulation (might switch this to edging, as “zapper” seems similar) F-foot fetish G-gagging H-humiliation I-impact play J-Japanese bondage K-klismaphilia L-limits M-masochism N-nylons O-objectum sexuality P-pregnancy fetish Q-quirofilia R-role play S-spectrophilia T-tentacles U-urophilia V-voyuerism W-whip X-wax play Y-yoni egg Z-zapper
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2015.03.24 22:47 doc007gonz "Wedding Day"
The young boy sat at the top of the stairs, listening as his grandma and aunt talked about his mom. "It's a damn, dirty shame of what she's doing to this family, what with her husband being in the ground not even a year; yet already marrying again." "There, there," his aunt Elizabeth cooed to her mother. "We all know it's only been just a year. Who knew she was gonna find a husband so soon, when she went to Casino with some of the insurance money. You know how impatient she is." "It's just not right, what she's doing to her son. He's just turning eight; now he's got to get used to another man being "Daddy". Hmph! It's just so fishy the way Ralph died, but I guess stranger things have happened..." The little boy, the epitome of patience, crept quietly closer to the edge. "Yes.", Elizabeth sighed. She thought of how, when they were all younger, she wanted to bed Ralph down first; she only had to wait a year after he and her sister to marry, to accomplish just that. She remembered the first time he looked at her with those brilliant, crystal-clear blue eyes he had; of how she wanted to just melt to the floor, every time he looked her in the eyes. The little boy, feeling he was intruding on some dark, adult topic; back away from the stairs, went quietly to his room, and went back to bed...
The young boy's eyes flew open into the darkness. He rubbed at them, trying to shake the sleep from them, then he realized in horror that he was outside; he was outside; at the graveyard, the graveyard where his father was buried.
"Joey, come to me."
His feet, of their own volition, began to stagger forward through what looked like a blue-grey lit fog; walking him ever closer, closer where he would never go; closer to his father's grave. He closed his eyes tightly, with his head down, as not to see where his feet were leading him; where he knew, inexorbiently, where they must go; to the tombstone of his father.
"Joey. Look at me, son."
"Don't want to, Daddy..."
The boy open his eyes just a peek, only to see that part of the blue-grey fog had assembled itself above him, just to reach down and lift his head. He sqiunced his eyes even more tighter, then; he felt if he look at that fog anymore, he would scream, and scream, and scream; until they found him the next morning, still screaming here in the clutches of the hands in the land of the dead.
"SON, I TOLD YOU TO LOOK AT ME!"
The boy's eyes then snapped open, and saw what was gonna make him scream so bad, but it was even more worse than he could imagine. His father was sitting on top of the tombstone, but he flickered in and out; as if he was a badly transmitted T.V. picture. One minute, he was there, seemingly, to float above the tombstone about six inches; the next, it was as if only half of him was being broadcast from whatever unknown he was being sent from; his feet were in the ground, it seemed like, up to his ankles. It not only hurt his eyes to see his father like this, it hurt his mind.
"Joey, I told you I would see you again." The apparition smiled, but it seemed more like a grimace; as if he was still feeling the pain of his fall that snapped his neck like a brittle twig. "There's gonna be some brutally, awful business tomorrow, and I don't want you to be a part of it. None whatsoever." His father shifted his hips, as if to get a better seat. "So that's why I'm here, to make sure you don't."
Like a flash, his father was before him. And as he reached down to touch his son's face, it felt as if the heat of the sun's surface gained ever closer, ever closer; yet with the touch of his hand, it was cold, oh, so cold, it was positively brittle. He looked into his father's eyes, which seem to grow, and to grow; until it filled the whole of the boy's universe. And as his father's frantic, insane laughter filled his ears, the young boy began to scream, and to scream, and to scream...
They found him the next day, curled in a fetal position on top of his father's grave, and still he screams.
The minister looked out over the congregation, proud of himself for insuring that this day had went so well with this wedding. He knew most were here not to witness a wedding, but to see, and to see, and to be seen. He thought this thought with a grimace, which he quickly replaced with a false smile; a smile that seem to hide all secrets; not only of his own, but of the whole world's sins. He had hoped there would be no trouble, this day; but beside the whicker whisper of the gossips here and there, he had steered his congregation clear of all such volitile subjects. Yet the most important of all questions still remained, and he felt a small terrible fear of trepidation; as if a rat was subtly eating away at the soft underside of his stomach. But what could he, as the leader of the church, do, except perform his solemn duty? Sometimes, being a leader of wayward sheep just seem to not be fair. And with that, he girded up his loins, pronounced the question, and sealed all their doom.
"If any among you now have any objection to these two being wedded, speak now, or forever hold your peace."
Aside for the birdwing flutter of the gossips sighs, gladly, thought the preacher, none had voices for their opposition.
"Then, by the power invested in me, I now pronounce..."
"I HAVE AN OBJECTION!"
And with that, the voyuer doors slammed open, and smashed into the walls adjacent with such force, the doors splintered into a thousand pieces; fell to the floor.
All heads turned to see who had spoken. All mouths screamed when they saw what shambled into view.
The creature lolled into the room, his head falling from side to side on his broken neck. "Inez." the thing spoke with the gravel of voices. "I told you I would see you again before the year was OUT!"
A drop of something wet dripped from it's mouth. When it hit the floor, it splashed and began the grave rot that speedily began to race in all directions.
The people, frantic now to just get away, get away, just to get away; found that they could not; for the rot had already spead to the floor underneath their feet, and was now climbing inexorbiently up their legs with such pain, the screams now turned into the cacaphony of damned souls in torment.
The thing now lurched down the aisle toward the waiting bride, griining through a corpse's face. The man she was going to marry had, alas!, just seemingly rotted away at her side; yet, strangely, she was untouched, she was white and light, and she was about to die.
The thing who was her husband that had died, and lo, had arisen again, shot out an arm that encircled her waist. "Honey, I told you I would always love you." And as he bent down to kiss his wife, gases and a spew of maggots shot into her mouth, and she wanted to scream, she had to scream, SHE MUST SCREAM!, but she could not; all she could get out was a strangled "OOOOOOOGH! OOOOOOOGH!"; as her mouth was filled with things that squirmed, much like his tongue that squirmed into her mouth; the kiss that now pronounced that they were, now once again, man and wife.
It was all quiet in the graveyard, except at where Ralph had been buried. Underneath the freshly turned ground, the moans of a woman in terror and little screams of intense pain seem to issue muffled by the dirt; the honeymoon of the damned. Presently, all became quiet, except the low murmer of the whispering wind through the trees; which sounded so much like dead souls muttering sobs of deep regret; yet the wind seem not to touch the blue-grey litten fog that issue forth and spill out in all directions across the ground.
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