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On Architectural Modernism as Evil in the Movies--The Magazine!

Truly, "Lost Highway" was one of the most unnerving films ever made, and also featured a great Malibu-style house with swimming pool, where the most frightening scene in the whole film takes place.

The Wright-inspired house in "North by Northwest" is also worthy of mention.

Posted on October 22, 2010 at 1:19 pm 0

On Architectural Modernism as Evil in the Movies--The Magazine!

Yeah, in terms of tropes, I would argue that the picket fences stand for modern-day repression and hypocrisy, the Spanish colonials suggest indolence and sensual perversion, the Victorian mansions and Greek Revivals symbolize troubled pasts, ill-gotten gains, snobbery and insanity (the Greek Revivals also featuring the stain of slavery). Log cabins = existentialistic horror and nature horror, trailer parks and similar dwellings are fears of poverty and degradation, suburban cookie cutter developments stand in for random violence and alienation and Frank Lloyd Wright just seems to work whatever film you put him in, from "Blade Runner" to "The House on Haunted Hill."

Modernist House evil tends to be about either Bond-villain like chicanery or sterile sociopathic behavior.

Posted on October 22, 2010 at 12:26 pm 0

On Architectural Modernism as Evil in the Movies--The Magazine!

Let's not forget the Gothic apartment house: "Rosemary's Baby"

And the modern apartment house: "Sliver"

And the Art Deco hotel: "the Shining"

Posted on October 22, 2010 at 12:17 pm 0

On Architectural Modernism as Evil in the Movies--The Magazine!

I can\\\'t wait to read this…but I would argue that there is no form of house not associated with evil in American film, from the picket-fence New England Colonials of \\\"Blue Velvet,\\\" \\\"A Nightmare on Elm Street\\\" and \\\"The Amityville Horror\\\" to the Spanish Colonials of \\\"Double Indemnity\\\" and \\\"Sunset Boulevard\\\" and of course including the grand Victorian mansions in \\\"The Haunting,\\\" etc., and the Greek Revival plantations in \\\"Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte,\\\" etc. Log cabins, trailer homes, suburban cookie-cutter developments and Frank Lloyd Wright masterworks all have received the going-over fairly equally.

I think it\'s less the presence of evil and more the type of evil that is associated with a particular style.

Posted on October 22, 2010 at 12:14 pm 0

On Dear Kathleen Parker: Welcome to New York City!

Of course, I suppose we could all live in small towns in South Carolina.

Problem = solved.

Posted on September 29, 2010 at 6:11 pm 0

On Dear Kathleen Parker: Welcome to New York City!

"These are completely different orientations toward life in general and the role of government specifically, and I'm not sure the two can be reconciled. City dwellers will never understand the folks who prefer the company of trees, and country folk will always resent the imperious presumptions of urbanites who think they know best."

Except for all those city dwellers with places in the, you know, country.

"But when the lights go out, I'm gonna light that dadgum candle."

I think you mean "That dad-gum durn tootin' rad-blasted mother-smuckin' pig-kissin' daddy-lovin' ding-blasted can-dull. Also: the sheriff is a ni-BONG!"

Posted on September 29, 2010 at 6:10 pm 0

On For Man's Benefit: A Woman Explains How to Throw a Dinner Party

Eep! Francophile-blocked by my automatic spell check!

Posted on September 22, 2010 at 4:45 pm 0

On For Man's Benefit: A Woman Explains How to Throw a Dinner Party

Why am I not surprised you're British.

Posted on September 22, 2010 at 3:32 pm 0

On For Man's Benefit: A Woman Explains How to Throw a Dinner Party

Indeed, Andoulette de Tofu a la Emilie Goulde!

Posted on September 22, 2010 at 3:30 pm 0

On For Man's Benefit: A Woman Explains How to Throw a Dinner Party

Learn the French names for things and a simple meal appears a masterpiece of elegance and elan!

Georges Gruyere instead of "homemade cheese puffs."

Macadoine au Champagne instead of "fruit salad with booze poured on it."

Posted on September 22, 2010 at 3:26 pm 0