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Shuddering Selection


Shudder.com, for those unaware of its existence, is a recently-functional video streaming site focused entirely on the horror genre. Efrit and I have been scouring the site for the benefits of its service. As with most services of a similar caliber, Shudder is relatively weak in the quantity of quality entertainment. It does contain a handful of classics that, despite my countless views of its material, I could easily watch again. It also has a few gems that other streaming sites do not have available, which I will mention later.

The categorical system is by far the highlight of the site. It breaks down the horror genre into clever, quippy sub-genres that provide a humorous way of directing you down your scare of choice. Sadly, each category is devoid of enough material to make the quips worth your while, but this is a common state for many start-up services.

Shudder shows a lot of promise. Efrit and I have decided to continue our subscription, since it isn't much of a financial commitment, to show our support for the goal the site is trying to reach. Should the flow of horror films increase over the coming months, Shudder could become the horror streaming powerhouse we have been dying (pun intended) for.

As far as gems to watch, one absolutely fantastic horror film on the site is Splinter. If you have not seen this creature flick, I highly recommend it. A fungus (eerily similar to a real-life fungus that affects ants in Brazil and Thailand, Ophiocordyceps unilateralis) takes over organisms and feasts on their blood. The concept behind the creature design, behavior, and "science" makes the film a great watch from beginning to end. The acting is a bit rough in patches at the beginning, but seems to hit its stride as the film goes on. Combined with pretty impressive special effects, it grabs your attention early and maintains it throughout.

Shudder compares well with the variety available on Netflix and Hulu (if we are ignoring the massive monthly increase for the Showtime package on Hulu, which I am), at least as the horror genre is concerned. At the moment, it offers little beyond that, and has nothing more to entice the bill-sharing individuals in your life into splitting the monthly. But perhaps, with a little bit of a following, Shudder can head into a direction that will make horror fans ecstatic.

© 2020 Sickle and Efrit | Dalton Vanhooser & Kyle Hagan