The Burning Moon

The Burning Moon ★★★

One of the better known shot-on-video films. It's sticky and disturbing special effects affording it a reputation that is otherwise at odds with its amateur production levels. Performance and cinematography seem to take second billing to a a constant flow of bloody grit. With its flickery aesthetic and over indulgence in splatter it seems to exist somewhere outside of our understandings of what a film should be and feel like. Compared to most other shot-on-video films, it's surprisingly clean but still feels worryingly comparable to the faded home movies of the 1990s.

Films such as these occupy a peculiar space within the horror genre. They're never particularly atmospheric, pretty much entirely void of any kind of social commentary nor will you find anything close to a memorable character let alone a consistent plot - all elements that thrive and flourish within the genre. The focus here is wholly upon the spectacle of splatter, at their worst films like this feel like little more than extended showreels, yet very occasionally the unfiltered depravity is able to elicit a response of its own. The Burning Moon is somewhere between the two. It's only memorable for its set pieces and excessive special effects, which in all fairness are pretty impressive, but seldom do these images have anything like a lasting effect.

The film itself is overwhelmingly brutal - it wheels through as many taboos and controversies as it can, seemingly with the intent on offending as many as possible. It's loaded with angst and aggression but unable to direct, control or aim this fury into anything meaningful - so it just sprays itself all over the place and ends up becoming less and less offensive and more and more ridiculous. But, thats probably the point, its walking a fine line between the profane and the absurd, and seems unconcerned by which way it falls.

Looking at it from a technical point of view, it's still an impressive piece of work. Looking at it through any other kind of lens, and its much less impressive. Regardless its interesting to note just how many of these films were coming out of Germany at this time, angry, provocative and expressive, not conforming to any rules or guidelines, an unfiltered assault on guts and brains.

Block or Report