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Wither the Present, Wither the Past: The Low-Budget Gothic Horror of Stockholm Syndrome Films
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Languages. (Centre for Concurrences in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3293-6324
2018 (English)In: B-Movie Gothic: International Perspectives / [ed] Justin D. Edwards, Johan Höglund, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2018, p. 122-138Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The wildly popular genre of Nordic Noir has been seen to elucidate ‘dark aspects of the welfare state model’ and to ‘portray violence and human darkness as “normal” parts of contemporary life’ (Brodén 2008). Crucial to this reading of Nordic Noir is the notion that the welfare state is premised on a Nordic modernity that furtively supported eugenics, colonialism and predatory capitalism (Keskinen et al 2009, Naum and Nordin 2013). Influenced by this trend, new Nordic Gothic in general, and Nordic B-Movie Gothic in particular, can also be seen to interrogate the demise of the welfare state and to open up society to the possibility of senseless violence. Increasingly, the Nordic gothic B-movie industry is now finding purchase for the bloody narratives that were successful in the US during the late 70’s and 80’s, and which were during this period largely banned in Sweden and other European countries.

From this vantage point, the present chapter examines the violent B-movie gothic of Swedish Stockholm Syndrome Films. Inspired by, and frequently referencing, US splatter and gore cinema, this independent studio explores a Nordic geographic and social context through gothic horror. Frequently set in the cabin endemic to low-budget cinema, the terror that rises to rend bodies asunder in these films is located in a complex historical past. Madness (2010) portrays the emigrant Swede (canonized in Swedish national literature) as monstrous redneck, while Wither (2012) allows horror to ascend from a Swedish mythological, underground past. Thus, Stockholm Syndrome Films’ movies show a present that, in gothic fashion, is rent asunder by a past that refuses to forget the violence and injustice whitewashed by historiography, and which demands terrible retribution exacted on the society that has neglected it.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2018. p. 122-138
Series
Traditions in World Cinema
Keywords [en]
Gothic, B-Movie, Swedish Cinema, Horror Cinema
National Category
Studies on Film
Research subject
Humanities, Film Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-77151ISBN: 9781474423441 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-77151DiVA, id: diva2:1239317
Projects
Narratives of EmpireLNUC ConcurrencesAvailable from: 2018-08-16 Created: 2018-08-16 Last updated: 2018-11-16Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf