Aw heck, here:
Matt Maxwell asks, in essence, does that which is horror in micro become science fiction in macro? Really good question, Matt. Brainwave: Thinking about it with this in mind, I think what sticks with me about Cloverfield is that it goes macro but yet it still feels “horror” to me. Perhaps this is a specific feature of Lovecraftian horror?
Perhaps. Lovecraftian horror, at least Lovecraft himself, only hinted and suggested at what would come should the Great Old Ones reassume their rightful position (or perhaps they already have, just that humans haven’t figured it out yet). Lovecraft himself never wrote of a post-Cthulhoid-invasion/awakening scenario. That’s largely been the purview of today’s writers. Lovecraft’s protagonists suffer through personal apocalypses and shuddering revelations that are cosmic in origin, but society doesn’t. Indeed, society survives and only has meaning *because* such an ocurrence is beyond the pale, at least for ordinary humans. So I’d say that Lovecraft double-dips here (and I’ve always maintained that Lovecraft was a science fiction author — there’s that silly distinction again — in his imagining of monsters driven by existential indifference.)
Aside, if humans are so insignificant, then why do the agents and cultists of the Great Old Ones plot against them? Does it matter to Cthulhu whether he sleeps or wakes?
CLOVERFIELD is an interesting case, as like GOJIRA, it was trying (successfully at times, though I had issues with it) to elicit horrific reactions. Whatever else GOJIRA was, it wasn’t a cuddly cottage industry in the first movie. The monster was terrifying, unstoppable but for mad science. CLOVERFIELD uses the same kind of monster, only a different scale, focusing on the micro, though on a greater tapestry than just the clutch of doomed characters. Would CLOVERFIELD feel more like a science fiction movie if the army had been able to send the monster back to the sea, thus preserving humanity (or at least staving off imminent destruction?)
Does LAND OF THE DEAD feel like a horror movie or something else? The zombies are horrible, but they’re also sympathetic and exploited. The humans have successfully rebuilt a normality in the dead land. Outside the walls, zombiepocalypse. Inside the walls, the Village Green (mall writ large). I suppose when one transmits itself within the second, then there’s horror, or is it simply recognition?
Golly, I’ve never done this blog back and forth stuff. Am I doing this right?