The October Diaries: Schizo

Illustration by Max Brown
Blurbs by Sean & Christof

October 15th, 2014:

Year: 1976
Director: Pete Walker
Format: Netflix
From IMDB: As bodies begin turning up, Samantha’s dark secret from the past begins to reveal itself.

Sean’s Take:

This one had maybe the best title card of the month. The movie was pretty good too. It was another middle-of-the-pack entry, one that started out with enough vigor and flair to let the ensuing tension-drop not be too hurtful to the audience.

I also don’t want to go into too much detail with this one as the plot takes a turn for the twisty and it would be unfair to spill some of the little juice this plot had to offer. Unfortunately, the twist was too easy to predict, from very early in the movie. This often ended up relegating the tension to tedium.

All told, the title of the movie evoked something a little more intense than what the movie ended up delivering, but I suppose you’re asking for trouble when you allow a title like Schizo to raise your expectations.

I’d say my favorite moments were the ones that focused on a middle aged man who starts the movie off on a great creep tone. We get a good stretch of the film where we follow his point of view as he doddles around his neighborhood, creeping anyone out within close proximity. He’s the kind of creep who packs shards of glass and bloody kitchen knifes in his suitcase for a trip, like they were pairs of socks he certainly didn’t want to forget. This stuff was great.

My favorite moment of all was when this good creep was separated from his bloody knife and a brief flicker of emotion crosses his face that resembles Tom Hanks’ agony at losing his friend Wilson. There was a real strange life to the scenes when he was onscreen and the movie turned a bit sloggy when he was away for too long.

I enjoyed myself despite the film suffering from that patented British drag, common to the middle portions of many british horror movies (not to be confused with the foggy-hall syndrome that kills the momentum of a lot of good Italian horror films from the same era).

Apparently, there is also a movie from 1980 called Schizoid starring Klaus Kinski. I’m still crossing my fingers that someday the franchises will cross and we’ll get a Schizo vs. Schizoid movie (because of synergy).


Christof’s Take:

I really wanted to love this movie. And maybe I did… for a time.

Maybe I fell in love with this film a little too hard a little too fast, trusting it would never betray the puppy-love I felt for the opening sequence leading to the brilliant title-card.

But this feeling of butterflies could not be sustained. It’s hard, too, when there’s been so much flirting over the years, making eyes at each other while scrolling through Netflix, looking away – down and back again while biting our lower lips tenderly, suggestively.

I should have known it would never work out with so much time and pressure built up. The movie I wanted it to be had grown too specific. And the reality of what the movie was did not stand a chance to the one on my pedestal. However, I partly feel as though I did not put it there; the movie climbed up there all by itself.

In the end, the movie betrayed my trust and broke my heart. But maybe that’s what the motion picture says of me when it tells the story.

I’m not saying the movie’s all bad, that there’s no good whatsoever in Schizo. Part of the problem is there’s too much good in Schizo for me to stomach seeing its bad attributes. I want to grab the movie by its non-existent shoulders and scream, “You’re better than this, Schizo!” But the problem is: it isn’t. It’s very set in its ways, and I know it’ll never change.

I’m sure we’ll remain friends. Or at least we’ll say that we will, but really we won’t.

So if I don’t see you again: so long, Schizo. We’ll always have the opening titles. 



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