H P Lovecraft

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
You could actually make a good creepy film based on 'The Colour Out Of Space' - just something very bleak and sparse, and with no need for 'EFFECTS' outside of the body-horror of the diseased family and the meteor descending.
There was a B/W (oddly enough) German indie semi-adaptation called Die Farbe that came out a few years ago - not seen it but I gather it got a generally warm reception from HPL fans.

Though I'm sure it's not a patch on Die, Monster, Die! :rolleyes:
 

nomos

Administrator
Id be interested to see what the adaption of Dan Simmon's 'the terror' is like. Obv not in the same league, but a pretty good tale of arctic (in the very cold sense) dread.
I'm about halfway through this, droid, thanks for the recommendation.
 

droid

Beast of Burden
I'm about halfway through this, droid, thanks for the recommendation.
How are you finding it? I went through a bunch of his stuff after reading that, and its head and shoulders above the rest. Plus, he's turned out to be a bit of an Orson Scott Card.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
There's a pretty decent horror film called In The Mouth of Madness which shares themes and locations and (almost) a title with Lovecraft but which isn't actually by him. I'd recommend it for sure.
 

nomos

Administrator
I'm liking it quite a bit so far. The relentless darkness and snowy dread has made a good mix with an especially bad winter, here. At first I was a bit worried that this entire 800-page historical novel would be told in the present tense, but then he changed it up. Lovecraft said that supernatural horror works best when the supernaturally horrific thing is set against a meticulously researched and highly realistic backdrop. Simmons does this in spades and I think it works. I'm a little less keen on the descriptions of "the thing on the ice" so far. I'd like it to be more spectral/unspeakable (as in HPL or even Blackwood's Wendigo), but we haven't seen too much of it yet either. Mostly it lurks, but when it's shown itself, the details seem can seem a bit too unimpressive in their precision (e.g. its head is three times the size of a man's!). But that's just a quibble. I find myself looking forward to getting back to it each night.
 

droid

Beast of Burden
Yeah, its more of a survival story than anything else. The supernatural element is nicely downplayed. The Masque of the red death chapter must be coming soon? The most fantastical yet memorable of the book I think.

Anyhows - thats kinda how I think a Mountains adaptation would have to be, gritty and prosaic with the environment as the main character - until the weird kicks in.
 

droid

Beast of Burden
"Dark outside on the wintry beach. Sunrise is well off and may not come again. The frozen pebbles crackle beneath my heels as I stagger toward the canvas of obsidian water, leaving strange and unsteady tracks on the skeletal shore. There is a sense of urgency building. Mine, or the Other's? I strip my clothes as I go and end up on the cusp of the sea, naked and shriveled. The stars are feral. They shudder—a ripple is spreading across the heavens and the stars are dancing wildly in its pulsating wake. A refulgence that should not be seen begins to seep from the widening fissure. Here is a grand and terrible happening to write of on the wall of a cave . . .God opening His Eye to behold the world and all its little works.

I have seen this before. Let others marvel in my place, if they dare. My work is done, now to sleep. When I mount from the occluded depths what will I behold? What will be my clay and how shall I be given to mold it? I slip into the welcoming flank of the sea and allow the current to tug my shell out and down into the abyssal night. It isn't really as cold as I feared. Thoughts are fleeting as the bubbles and the light. The shell begins to flake, to peel, to crumble, and soon I will wriggle free of this fragile vessel.
But—

One final kernel of wisdom gained through the abomination of time and service. A pearl to leave gleaming upon this empty shore; safely assured that no one shall come by to retrieve it and puzzle over the contradiction. Men are afraid of the devil, but there is no devil, just me and I do as I am bid. It is God that should turn their bowels to soup. Whatever God is, He, or It, created us for amusement. It's too obvious. Just as He created the prehistoric sharks, the dinosaurs, and the humble mechanism that is a crocodile. And Venus fly traps, and black widow spiders, and human beings. Just as He created a world where every organism survives by rending a weaker organism. Where procreation is an imperative, a leech's anesthetic against agony and death and disease that accompany the sticky congress of mating. A sticky world, because God dwells in a dark and humid place. A world of appetite, for God is ever hungry.

I know, because I am His Mouth."
 

droid

Beast of Burden
""When Choate stood to shake my hand, I nearly crapped my pants. I knew from the files the Choate brothers were tall, but I swear he wasn't much shy of eight feet, and axe-handle broad. He wore a white silk shirt with stains around the pits. He smelled rank. Rank as sewage, a pail of fish guts gone to the maggots. A fly landed on his wrist, crawled into his sleeve. Bruenig wasn't jiving about those kids being filthy.

"My hand disappeared into Choate's and I decided that I'd really and truly screwed up. Like sticking my hand into a crack in the earth and watching it shut. Except, he didn't pulp my bones, didn't yank me in close for a hillbilly waltz, nothing like that. He said he was happy to meet a real live P.I., made me sit in the best chair and poured Johnny Walker Black in greasy shot glasses, drank to my health. All very cordial and civilized. He asked if I had met his brother, and I said no, but Josh was hanging around your house and it really had to stop. He agreed that Josh was on the rude side—he'd always been a touch wild. Choate asked what you thought about the barn, if you'd figured it out yet. I said no and he laughed, said since you hadn't blown your brains out, you must not know the whole truth, which, to me, sounded like some more hocus pocus crap was in the offing. I wasn't wrong on that count.

Did I know anything about String Theory? He thought I looked like a guy who might dabble in particle physics between trailing unfaithful husbands and busting people's heads. I told him I'm more of a Yeats man and he said poetry was an inferior expression of the True Art. What about molecular biology; surely I craved to understand how we apes rose from primordial slime. No? Supersymmetry? Hell no, says I, and he chuckled and filled my glass. Guess the Bruenig spiel was right about a few things. The Choate men were scientists, always have been interested in the stars and nature, time travel and all sorts of esoteric shit. Mostly they studied how animals and insects live, how, lemmesee . . .how biological organisms adapt and evolve in deep quantum time. The very nature of space time itself. Choate said the family patriarchs had been prying into that particular branch of scientific research since before the Dark Ages.

"What was Kaleb's interest? Tyler said, Hypermutation and punctuated equilibrium. Started in on those SQUIDs Salter told me about. Kaleb wanted to accelerate his own genetic evolution. He grafted these homemade SQUIDs onto his brain and that jumpstarted the process. I can just imagine the operation. Brrr. He survived without lobotomizing himself and it was a roaring success. The implant heightened his mental acuity by an incredible degree, which led to more inventions—Devices Tesla never dreamt of—never dared! Jesus Louise . . .shoulda seen Tyler Choate's face when he said that. He leered at me like he intended to make me his numero uno bitch.
"What kind of devices, you may be asking. See, Grandpa figured there was a way to configure electromagnetic pulses to create a black hole, or a kind of controlled tear in subatomic matter, and I heard some think-tank guys in Boston tried the very same thing a few years ago, so between you and me, maybe the geezer wasn't totally bonkers, but anyhow. Kaleb wanted to use this black hole, or what ever the hell it's supposed to be, to access a special radioactive energy. They'd detected traces of it in the pylons, like Salter said, and Tyler confirmed the radiation doesn't exist anywhere in the known spectrum.

"I'm blitzed and feeling a bit kamikaze, so I ask, where's it come from, then? Out there, is how Tyler put it. Out there in the great Dark. So picture this: this friggin' psycho hillbilly leaning over me with his face painted like blood in the lamplight, sneering about ineffable mysteries and flexing his monster hands as if he's practicing to choke a camel. He grins and says Grandpa Kaleb bored a hole in space and crawled through. Tyler started spouting truly wild-ass stuff. Some bizarre mumbo-jumbo about a vast rift, the cosmic version of the Marianas Trench. He said very old and truly awful things are drifting in the dark and it's damned lucky for us apes that these huge, blind things haven't taken any notice of planet Earth.

"Tyler said Kaleb became The door and the bridge. The mouth of the pit. And if that wasn't enough, Tyler and Josh are hanging around because the rest of Kaleb's heirs have been taken to His bosom, rejoined the fold. Tyler and Josh had been left with us chickens to, I dunno, guard the henhouse or something. To make things ready. Ready for what? For the Old Man, of course. For His return. I didn't press him on that.
Another thing . . .The bonus effect of Kaleb's gizmo's electromagnetic pulse is it's real nifty for shutting off car engines and stranding people near the ol' farm . . .I asked why they wanted to strand people near their property and he just looked at me. Scary, man. He said, Why? Because it gives Him tremendous pleasure to meet new and interesting people. Grandfather always liked people. Now He loves them. Sadly, folks don't drop by too often. We keep Him company as best we can. We're good boys like that.

"By this point I was pretty much past wasted and I know he went on and on, but most of it flew over my head. One thing that stuck with me as I got ready to stagger outta there, is he clamped one giant paw on my shoulder and said with that creepy smile of his, 'Out there' is a relative term, it's closer than you might think. Oh my, the great Dark is only as far away as your closet when you kill the light . . .as your reflection when it thinks you aren't looking. Bye, bye and see you soon.

"I beat it topside. Barefoot. Bastard kept my shoes . . . ."
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
"Dark outside on the wintry beach..."
I like this. Reminds me a little of the end of Ackroyd's Hawksmoor, when Nicholas Dyer lies down to die in the aisle of one of his new churches and feels "[his] Shaddowe stretch over the World".
 

droid

Beast of Burden
Laird Barron, from 'The Imago Sequence'. Really rating him. Noir-ish characters with a proper Lovecraftian feel and nice florid prose. Serious echoes of Ballard as well. Practically made for Dissensus.

I know Ive gone on about Adam Nevill a bit as well, but you should really read him - 'Last days' or 'the ritual'.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
He was aware of Barron. There's quite a bit of verbatim Ligotti in there as well.
Started reading 'Conspiracy...' (for which thanks, along with the rest) this evening. I see what you mean, it's obvious as soon as you look at it.
 

you

Well-known member
Sup Tea. If you dig, like, uh, conceptually, CotHR then you should take a look at Brassier's Nihil Unbound. I cannot begin to explain how persuasively that book argues for a philosophical "icy bleakness of things". Seriously though, if you read CotHR the you should read NU.

As a slight aside - House of Leaves is worth pitching in context to the whole Poe/HPL/Ligotti thing. HoL is a horror that defies logic and unsettles un that premise. Sure you all know it but worth holding in hand.

Also, and totally not least, Eugene Thacker's Horror of Philosophy is perhaps the most concise and powerful of the lot. RB and TL are amazing in their own ways (philosophically careful text and thoroughness / literary sensitivity - consecutively) but ET's book is wonderful.
 

droid

Beast of Burden
Started reading 'Conspiracy...' (for which thanks, along with the rest) this evening. I see what you mean, it's obvious as soon as you look at it.

You went right in at the deep end there! If you survive, make sure to go for 'Occultation' next.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
You went right in at the deep end there! If you survive...
Ha! Well I read The King in-, I mean The Necronom-, I mean Cyclonopedia with sanity intact - sort of - mostly - so I expect I'll be OK with Ligotti. Probably.

*gibbers*
 
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