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Nightbreed (DVD)

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Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy - Fantasy / Theatrical Release: 1990 / Director: Clive Barker / Actors: Craig Sheffer, David Cronenberg, Anne Bobby, Charles Haid, Hugh Quarshie ... / DVD released 2001-08-21 at Warner Home Video / Features of the DVD: Closed-captioned, Colour, Dolby, DVD-Video, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC

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      01.12.2008 19:26
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      Clive Barker says it's alright to be a freak

      In Nightbreed (1990) the monsters are the good guys, the humans are destructive, intolerant and violent and in one case a sadistic serial killer.
      The monsters, known as Nightbreed, live in their own underground city, Midian, away from humanity.

      Nightbreed marginalised by society live their lives out of sight of humans. They live by their own rules and are not governed by any outsiders. Humans are aware of the Nightbreed (or at least have heard the rumours) and allow them do as they please as long as they stay within their refuge and do not stray into human territory. This also works in reverse, where Nightbreed allow humans to behave as they wish unless they enter the Nightbreed's territory in which case they will assert their authority and subject the humans to their laws.

      They cannot be a part of a society that has pre-conceived ideas of normality and perfection, a world where to look different means to be treated differently. One of the Nightbreed points out the hypocrisy in the way the humans treat them by saying 'You call us monsters but when you dream you dream of flying, changing'.

      The films' main protagonist, Boone, transforms from human into Nightbreed. He becomes one of the outsiders.
      It is assumed that the Nightbreed are evil and they become scapegoats for the crimes of others. The real villain of the film is Dr Decker, a mask-wearing, human serial killer.

      At the climax to the film the Nightbreed find their sanctuary under attack from humans, they try to defend their home but it is destroyed and so they inevitably become a part of the outside world, the human world. They are liberated.

      Here the monsters can challenge authority and social taboos simply by being in amongst humanity rather than hidden from it. Boone has encouraged them to be proud of their identity and to stand up for themselves.

      This film celebrates difference and community. It is not that dissimilar from Tod Browning's Freaks, where the supposed 'freaks' are shown to be normal, good people and the 'regular' sized circus workers are the evil-minded marginal freaks of the film, they provide the horror.

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