Full disclosure, I was heavy in the gothic scene in the late 1980s. Inspired by Ken Russell’s seminal Gothic and the band Sisters of Mercy, I did the funeral jacket and black lipstick hustle throughout the twilight of my teens. Thanks to clubs like The Zero, Los Angeles was the international flashpoint for goth culture then, so there is some solid tradition Seize The Night is channeling. The snappy script by Gerard is well informed, as he makes sure it is mentioned how Bergman looks like a Sandman character. Bergman is the spitting image of Delirium, my favorite member of the Endless family in those comic books. Both Gerard and Bergman are dressed to the gothic nines, with the proper balance of shiny black bondage gear and elegant trappings. Gerard plays it smart by writing both leads to be down to earth in contrast with their otherworldly looks.
Though they look spooky, most Gothics are just regular folks with macabre sensibilities. This makes GB and GG easy to sympathize with. While the themes get pretty heavy, the storyline is straightforward and easy to follow. The movie will surely delight goths but is still accessible to audiences not in the scene. For the uninitiated, this is a great opportunity to explore the gothic sandbox before the arrival of the Sandman series.
“…Blalock’s visual kaleidoscope puts this among the great exemplars of hallucinema.”
At bat-filled its core, this romantic drama is a thematic and experiential drug film. Marijuana tends to enhance vibrant colors and captivating visuals, so Blalock’s visual kaleidoscope puts this among the great exemplars of hallucinema. With the camerawork of Daniel Button, the director bathes his subjects in hyper unreal lighting creating the awe of a chemical meteor shower. He also captures the gorgeous nocturnal lighting in Los Angeles, flashing from one breathtaking image to another. The movie transmits the same visual power found in old Argento or recent Winding-Refn pictures. If one were to take an edible at the start of the film, it would kick in right when the visuals get truly unhinged.
But be warned, for some, the subject matter may either be a little bit of a downer or could potentially trigger you hard. However, those with a taste for the weird and outlandish will be fed well here. Also, it has some trippy Christmas imagery in it. This means you can watch Seize The Night now but also again during the holidays. I know many Gothics in need of more holiday classics to go along with their yuletide screenings of The Nightmare Before Christmas. This is a slick, stylish trip into a dark side full of lights.
"…I know many Gothics in need of more holiday classics..."