Valentine’s Day is now past us, but that doesn’t matter: it’s still the most romantic month out of the year! Plus, I feel like it’s time we take a look at certain horror flicks in a little bit of a different light, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do in this post. Below, you’ll find two movies I’ve found, which I think have subtle hints at romance in them. Am I simply looking for love in all the wrong places; or am I possibly on to something here? Hell, maybe I’m just psychotic! Either way, leave a comment below and let me know if you agree with me.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1973)
Valentine’s Day is time for romance, showing affection for a significant other, and making the entire day much more than special. Showering and spoiling a boyfriend or girlfriend with chocolate, flowers, and teddy bears that are taller than I am. What about in the world of horror? Romance and horror aren’t usually words that are associated together, but they can be if one really pays close attention to what he or she is watching.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). The dinner scene. It was gruesome, brutal, and downright disturbing, even after watching it ten times. Sally, the only survivor of her friends is strapped to a chair placed at a table of a family of killers, awaiting, full of fright and fear to either be tortured, or killed. Leatherface has several masks made of human skin, and wears them throughout the film. During the dinner scene, he comes out wearing the skin of a woman with makeup on. This is implying he’s wanting it to be a nice, family dinner where they can all sit together and drink the blood once Sally’s fingers are cut open.
Thomas told us all about you. More potatoes, dear?
A serial killer wearing the skin of a “fresh faced” woman next to his cannibalistic family, ready and waiting to kill a young girl. Romantic, huh?
Sweeney Todd: the Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007)
Mr. Todd murders the customers with a straight razor as they sit in a specialized chair made by Sweeney Todd himself. This revolving chair swings back and plummets the victims into the basement where Mrs. Lovett, his partner, turns parts of their bodies and bakes them into meat pies to sell in her shop beneath the area where Mr. Todd does his work. Sweeney Todd had a beautiful wife and daughter many years before, and was falsely transported outside of London by the heinous Judge Turpin so he could be with Mr. Todd’s wife. Now he wants his revenge.
When Todd returned to London he found out his wife had been poisoned, and his daughter wasn’t anywhere in sight; but was actually Judge Turpin’s new love interest. As Sweeney Todd is doing his daily killings, Mrs. Lovett sweetly comes up to his office and talks, sings, and dances about what they could have together. They already had this great business going; her meat pies went from the worst in town to the best; but all Todd wanted was Judge Turpin to be murdered like his wife, only he’d do it himself.
An old beggar/homeless bum who seems delirious comes into the shop, rambling on and on, looking for someone. Sweeney Todd is enraged and slits her throat and tosses her into the basement without realizing who she was; his wife. He and Mrs. Lovett are dancing in the basement about how wonderful things were going after Judge Turpin was murdered, talking about what they could have together and a family they’d have; she doesn’t know Mr. Todd is tricking her, throwing her into the burner where she burns and rids the corpses. Then he sees his wife. He kneels and cradles her in his arms, asking himself why he didn’t see it sooner, asking what has he done, the feeling of guilt overwhelming him.
A little poor boy, Toby, who has been helping Mrs. Lovett, sneaks up behind Todd and slits his throat with the straight razor he used on everyone else. Sweeney Todd dies and bleeds on his wife that is still across his lifeless lap. This underlying, unrequited love story between Mrs. Lovett and Sweeney Todd, and the story of love pulsing through Mr. And his straight razors. He loves his work. And his work killed him.