Half Past Midnight (1988)

EDITOR’S NOTE: For another article on this, click here. There’s also an interview with director Wim Venk on the site.

Wim Venk only made six movies — including PandoraDanse MacabreHeaven Is Only In Hell and this one — but man, this movie is something else. It starts in a very ordinary way, as Debbie (Angelique Viesee) is relentlessly treated like utter garbage by the other girls and even a teacher (Ad Kleingeld) that seems sympathetic just wants to roughly take her on her teenage twin bed.

Is it any wonder that the girls all conspire to spray Debbie in the face with hairspray and then laugh as she’s hit by a truck? Well, that’s taking it far. And taking it too far would be gyrating atop her and taking photographs of the grisly carnage. Want it to get even worse? While she struggles in the ICU, a nurse who just ends up being the mother of one of the popular girls injects her in the eye with poison like a SOV Dead and Buried.

Debi arises and goes on a campaign of terror like a telekinetic-less Carrie, using a chainsaw and the pounding beats of composer Rob Orlemans to take twenty-five minutes of torment and finally have it up to here and then unleash pure traumatic hatred on everyone who has ever done her wrong. It’s also in Dutch and everyone speaks stilted English which only serves to make it all that much more foreign.

I love seeing this through decades of tape erosion and tracking between each piece of action as the synth beats my help into pulp. It’s not magic, but it’s quite close.

You can download this from the Internet Archive and watch it on YouTube. There’s even a making of on altohippiegabber’s page.

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