Sunday, 21 December 2008

Insomnia leads to restlessness which leads to disturbance

I've suffered from insomnia most of my life. When I was at primary school, I used to get terrible migraines and my mum would close the curtains and turn the lights off and put me in bed. I would be alone in my dark bedroom and then the horses would start. I used to hear pounding sounds in my ears - there was an army of horses running in my ears and this would terrify me. I'd try and fall asleep but the noises would get louder. I would lie awake for hours whilst the whole house was quiet and fast asleep.

The only solace for me when I was younger were books and the television. In those good old days, BBC1 would just be teletext after about 12pm and ITV would have nothing on too. The only channels that would still be running were BBC2 and Channel 4. It was here in these childhood insomniac times that my fascination with what some would say 'head fuck' films began.

One of the first extreme violent and disturbing films I watched was 'Butterfly Kiss'. It was on really late at night on BBC2 and I watched it pretty much from the beginning. It is an extremely dark tale about 2 lesbian lovers from Liverpool - one is a wholesome girl whilst the other is a sadistic, depraved killer. I watched it so long ago but a few scenes stick in mind, namely one scene where Amanda Plummer takes off her clothes and she is wearing a chain body suit however the chains are all pierced into her body. That image freaked me out for a long time and the thought of it now still scares me.

You can view the trailer below. I'm trying to track it down on DVD but no luck so far:

Another film I remember watching that made quite an impact was 'The Cement Garden' which is based on Ian McEwan's book. The story is an incestuous tale based around a family of children whose parents have died. I just remember watching it and being shocked and intrigued by everything I saw.

Another film which disturbed me was 'King Girl' which was the story of a girl bully in Leeds and one of the girls she bullied. It was very interesting seeing both sides of the story and more importantly, seeing the factors that made the girl become a bully which in her case, was her extremely troubled home life. I can't find much about this film on the internet at all so no clips unfortunately.

I don't think my parents realised that I was watching these sorts of films at such a young age. Has it affected me greatly and made me into a violent, troubled person? I think not. It did perhaps open my eyes and ears to a lot of things that other people of my age tried to understand years later.

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