Welcome to Friday Night Flix, where there’s never a need to leave the couch or put on pants. Each week I’ll recommend an under-the-radar movie currently available on one or more of the major streaming platforms. They won’t all be classics, but every selection is guaranteed to be 100% watchable or your money back.
I’m generally a fan of Bloody Disgusting. I often find myself at odds with the reviews but when it comes to horror news there’s nothing else on the internet that’s nearly as thorough. I won’t ever need to read an entire post about the DVD release date for Gallowwalkers (welcome back, Wwesley!), but it’s nice to know I could if I wanted to.
The one thing I’ve always wondered about is the site’s BD Selects film distro arm. I gather the way works is when the staff digs an unsold movie, BD buys the rights and pushes it out to DVD, Netflix and various VOD partners. Where I have trouble is when Bloody goes and gives one of those movies a great review. From what I can tell the reviews come out first but still, seems like a conflict of interest. I suppose I shouldn’t complain. While I’ve been letdown on occasion, this setup gets more decent genre fare into my eyeholes than would otherwise be possible. And it’s certainly worth sitting through a few stinkers (Exit Humanity? Exit My TV!) if it means every now and then I’ll get stuff like The Woman. (Netflix, Hulu.)
The Woman just barely qualifies as horror thanks to some nasty but forgettable gore. What sets it apart is the two main characters: the titular female and her tormentor, a domineering lawyer with a short fuse and some seriously twisted family values. The Woman herself is made special by the fearless commitment of Pollyana McIntosh, whom I suspect we’ll be seeing much more often in the near future. Not to be outdone, Sean Bridges brings a placid insanity to the father role that’s both amusing and terrifying. The control he exerts over his helpless family coupled with their complacent participation in hideous acts of cruelty present a fascinating (if ever so slightly implausible) dynamic. Take away the feral cannibal chained up in the cellar and you’d still be left with a sharp commentary on the cycles of abuse.
Added bonus: Though she has terrible hygiene and rotting teeth, the wild woman appears to regularly shave her legs and armpits. Sure that doesn’t make much sense but I laud the director’s judgment: showing someone getting their face chewed off is one thing, but female body hair is just gross.