Just finished watching the unclassifiably weird and freakishly mythological horror film, Teeth
The horror genre thrives on metaphor, and in exploiting the myth of "vagina dentata," Mitchell Lichtenstein's grisly B-movie Teeth has found a doozy. From the Latin meaning "toothed vagina," the myth generally expresses a fear of castration, and was originally meant as a warning to men about having sex with strange women, but Lichtenstein has cleverly reversed perspectives. In Teeth, this shocking anomaly evolves into a David Cronenberg-like expression of psychic distress, as a prim teenage girl undergoes a coming of age that's frightening at first, then oddly emboldening, once she realizes her sexual leverage. It's a brilliant concept for a horror movie, not least because the genre is usually so dedicated to male gratification, but the material requires a consistent tone, and first-time director Lichtenstein can't quite get a handle on it.
For the rest of the review:
As for the cinematics and storytelling? I give the first time director, Mitchell Lichtenstein
, more credit. The director inherited his artistic eye from his really famous Pop artist, Roy Lichtenstein
What makes it so potent is it manages to keep its mystery a mystery and no attempt to actually touch upon an explanation (outside of loose implications and a few not so deeply thought out speculations on the theory of this case of vagina dentata
. I believe it should become an ageless classic of the horror genre.
It truly is a female empowering horror film if it could actually be labeled as such.