What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this film is absolutely not for kids. It includes incessant, vicious attacks on a family traveling through the New Mexican desert by a group of mutants. The violence is startling, explicit, and aggressive (dogs are knifed and eviscerated; humans suffer knifing, dismembering, shooting, burning at a stake). Someone bites off a parakeet's head. The monstrous mutants watch their prey through binoculars, which the film renders as spooky "surveillance" imagery. Women appear undressed as monsters try to rape them. Characters smoke, drink beer and margaritas, and refer to "the chronic"/pot. Opening credits sequence features ghastly victims of radiation, in jars and photos.
- Families can talk about the film's two family units: How do the travelers/victims turn desperate and become like their attackers? How do the film's graphic displays of violence (now a staple of horror/slasher movies) serve specific functions? Do viewers want to be scared or repulsed, to identify with victims or monsters, or to take pleasure in the technical expertise of the violence? Why do horror movies remain so popular, especially with teens?