Four Faves Files: Kier-La’s Horror House

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Filmmaker and author Kier-La Janisse tells The Letterboxd Show about cultivating the cinematic canon of female madness via her book, House of Psychotic Women.

It’s been ten years since Kier-La Janisse published her seminal book, a hybrid of film criticism and personal memoir entitled House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography Of Female Neurosis In Horror And Exploitation Film. Using a canon of mostly genre films, she mirrors her own troubled life stories against those of numerous unstable female film characters, in the process creating a passionate testament to how the solace found in cinema can literally save lives. 

As such, it was an honor to welcome her as a guest on Four Faves to glean some of her copious genre film knowledge and discuss the newly updated edition of her book, which features more than a hundred new entries. There’s an accompanying five-disc box set from Severin Films (where Janisse works as a producer and editor), featuring four rarities that are all on Blu-ray for the first time ever: Identikit, I Like BatsFootprints and The Other Side of the Underneath

Read Mia Vicino’s latest Four Faves Files column on Journal, giving a rundown on some of the most exquisite details from the episode, and listen to Kier-La Janisse’s conversation with Slim and Mitchell, where they also dig into her four faves (Melody, Over the EdgeCockfighterThe Last Wave).