Body-horror is not a new genre, but in recent years more and more of the movies have become female fronted, coming-of-age themed films. The women are often young adults, just coming into their own, and their lives are in turmoil. Themes of sexual awakening mix with violent and gory transformations in the movie can be seen as symbolic for the transformation either within themselves, or with the people around them. Below are five must watch body-horror films from the last ten years.
Sarah (Alex Essoe) has dreams of stardom, but her big break comes at a terrible price. Her desire to be a movie star pushes her into dark depths of her own psyche as her body begins to fall apart. She’s been warned that sacrifices have to be made on her quest for the silver screen, and her fame will come at a terrible price. Sarah’s transformation is truly horrifying - and fascinating - to watch as she’s given the choice to fade away or do what’s necessary to become a star, no matter how violent or gory.
Casey’s (Elma Begovic) trip to Costa Rica for her bachelorette is supposed to be a fun escape, but what seems to be a simple bug bite turns out to be something more. Arriving home, complications from her impending wedding and her grating mother-in-law aren’t the worst of her issues. The seemingly innocent bug bite brings on animalistic instincts and a horrifying transformation. While not the greatest film, the body-horror elements of the the film are enough to make it worth a watch.
Seeking cash, Mary (Katharine Isabelle), enters the world of extreme body modification. Her new clients desire some strange alterations, from having their body transformed into a living doll, or looking like Betty Boop. But when Mary is attacked, she puts her new found skills to work in getting bloody revenge on the man who wronged her. More and more transformations follow, as Mary’s skillset grows.
Pauline (AnnaLynne McCord), a disturbed and slightly deranged high schooler, has high aspirations of being a surgeon. Her fantasies are dark, twisted, and filled with blood and gore. She’ll do anything to impress her mother (Traci Lords), including slicing and dicing her way through the movie. Most of the body horror occurs in Pauline’s escapist fantasies, but when she brings them to life, you can’t help but be shocked at how far she’ll go.
Men will cringe their way through Teeth, while some women may find a bit of hidden glee in this cautionary tale. Repressed teen Dawn (Jess Weixler) isn’t exactly a normal. While she doesn’t look strange on the outside, deep inside she has something most girls don’t - vagina dentata. AKA teeth in her vagina. It’s part sexual awakening, part body horror, and has more heart than one might expect. Men be warned, you will see graphic depictions of castration.
Did we miss any movies you think should be on the list? Let us know!