Jul 22, 2007

The 7th Victim

I caught The 7th Victim on TCM a week or two back. This is Kim Hunter’s first film, and is one of Val Lewton’s work in the horror genre. Kim plays an innocent girl who finds that her sister is involved with a group of Satanists. For Satanists though they seem peculiarly staid. (Not that I have a personal acquaintance with any Satanists.) Unlike Anton LaVey’s group in the 60s they don’t seem to be involved in any sexual activity; there are no naked wenches serving as altars for black Masses. Of course, it was the 40s, and the Hays code was still in effect. They’re also non-violent Satanists. For the most part they seem to sit around and drink cocktails, which I guess is pretty wicked. What exactly is the point of being a Satanist, if all you’re going to do is sit around and drink cocktails? Any non-Satanist can do that. The movie’s big scene, and one that is fairly creepy, is a shower scene in which Kim’s character receives a visit from a woman who warns her about getting involved. The woman is shown as a shadow, and the scene conveys a fair amount of menace.

Next up in my continuing education project: Plutarch’s life of Lycurgus.