Last month, some colleagues and I established a monthly film night for the staff and students in the Department of Social Sciences at Northumbria. Last night we screened Evil Dead (2013): Fede Alvarez's excellent remake of Sam Raimi's original from 1981.
I introduced the film, situating it within the long cultural aftermath of the British "video nasties" panic and in relation to notions of cultural "recycling" in the wake of Donald Trump's regressive "Make American Great Again" nonsense. The Evil Dead remake, I contended, can be thought of as a particularly progressive form of a cultural recycling, in that, by being a more "extreme" version of a previously banned film, it illustrates how futile state censorship ultimately proves to be.
Images courtesy Shaan Mahmud
I have any essay in the Routledge Companion to British Cinema History, edited by I.Q. Hunter, Laraine Porter and Justin Smith. The proofs came through yesterday. It's a terrific book, and I feel very fortunate to have my work appear alongside so many terrific scholars.
My essay derives from my research into British video culture and is entitled: 'Rewind, playbook: re-viewing the "video boom" in Britain'.
On 12 November I'll be delivering a keynote lecture about death films at a conference being held at TU Dortmund, Germany: Spectacular Now: The Politics of the Contemporary Spectacle.
The full programme has just been announced and can be accessed here.
Dr Johnny Walker
Senior Lecturer in Media, Northumbria University