Cult Movies

Cult Movie Essentials: Society (1989)

Since its 1989 release there still hasn’t been an American film as unrepentantly revolting as Brian Yuzna debut ‘Society’. The ‘dare you see it?’ reputation it’s acquired syncs with the torture-porn cycle it inspired but, the difference here is humour. Yuzna effortlessly mixes acute social commentary with sick making horror so well it can barely hide its knowing nods to camera.

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For the films first two thirds it seems little more than a conventional conspiracy movie that seems to be set in the show ‘Beverly Hills 91210’. The story revolves around lead character, High School Jock and family black sheep, Billy slowly unravelling the putrid can of worms which is his families, and the broader close knit community he lives in, secret. It’s only when he thinks the secret is revealed that ‘Society’ truly exposes its stomach turning truth and the true horror begins.

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Now released on ‘Blu Ray’ the film has lost none of its satirical bite. Unfortunately it could now be set in any western community not just the plastic all American districts it previously mocked. In its twenty six years the films practical effects have lost none of their ability to turn a stomach and truly horrify.  The story is still strong and performances keep the sinister feeling that something just isn’t right ticking over in your brain.

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‘Society’ was a massive flop on its original release in the States but, became a cult hit largely thanks to UK audiences. Unlike many other ‘must see’ horror films from the 1980s early 1990s ‘Society’ truly deserves its reputation. If you’ve never seen it please do seek it out.

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