Society is a horror film that takes jabs at the world we live in and it’s definitely a feature you need to see if you haven’t already.
I absolutely love 80s horror; therefore, it was shocking to me that I had never seen or heard of the film Society! It was directed by the awesome Brian Yuzna and was initially released on May 2nd, 1989.
It’s rare to come across a horror picture that touches on problems that we all face. Unfortunately, Society is a little known film and completely underrated. It’s way beyond a campy, grossed out horror. Don’t get me wrong, there are some outrageous, far out there scenes within the first 25 minutes; however, the overall film is mind blowing.Society focuses on a rich boy named Billy Whitney. Billy has a great life in a Beverley Hills mansion with his parents and sister Jenny. He has a beautiful ditzy girlfriend; he’s a star player on the school basketball team; and he’s running for class president. Of course…there’s a catch! Bill has never been able to get rid of the feeling that he doesn’t quite fit in. He believes he was adopted and his parents just hasn’t told him yet.
Billy’s sister Jenny on the other hand is on the verge of adulthood. She will be joining the fancy-pants club…it’s not called that, but it should be. It’s the Beverly Hills upper class society. Sounds pretty normal for fancy-pants, rich people, right? Well, what isn’t so normal is that Billy finds a disturbing recording of his sister and parents having a bizarre, sexual conversation! From then on, it gets even stranger for Billy. As more weird things continue to happen, Billy becomes more paranoid and has no one to trust. I will stop there to avoid spoilers. Although this film was made in 1989 and some of you may have already seen it, it is so far out there that I refuse to ruin it for any of you who have not.
Society is a horror film filled with a son’s worst nightmare. Yet, it’s somewhat of a coming of age film. Due to the incestuous undertones between Billy’s parents and his sister, it may be a bit uncomfortable to watch for some viewers. But it is definitely worth sitting though some of the scenes that are difficult to stomach, as the film as a whole is quite good and very original.
The Whitney family seems perfect on the outside, but they may truly be one of the most dysfunctional families in the history of horror. What I love about this film is that it defines society. It doesn’t shy away from showing the class system between the rich and poor. Although it doesn’t offer a ton of outright gore, there’s plenty (and I mean plenty) of outrageously gruesome scenes, which in my opinion are far better!
I have been a horror fan my whole life, and I find it really unfortunate that this film doesn’t get that much love. As I said previously, I’ve never heard of it, so I went in completely blind. Once I finished watching it, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It was funny, creepy and insanely gross. Overall, I highly recommend Society to those who would like to see a film that is completely out of this world. I have never seen a picture like this! It is disgusting but beautiful, it’s a twisted peculiar late 1980s gem. Bravo, Mr. Yuzna!
WICKED RATING: 7/10
Director: Brian Yuzna
Writer(s): Rick Fry, Woody Keith
Stars: Billy Warlock, Devin DeVasquez
Studio/ Production Co: Society Productions Inc
Length: 99 Minutes
Sub-Genre: Comedy, Horror