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The FYA Advent Calendar Day 13: Flowers In The Attic

In which Aunt Erin brings you some of your favorite incest to make your family feel more normal.

The FYA Advent Calendar Day 13: Flowers In The Attic

Hey y'all!!  Guess what's on Netflix Instant Streaming right now?  Guess guess guess!  I bet you can't!  I bet you can't unless you're one of the fifteen people who've emailed us about it lately, asking where the hell this review is already?  (The answer?  It's been in my pants THIS WHOLE TIME.)

That's right, bitches.  FLOWERS IN THE MOTHER FUCKING ATTIC, Y'ALL.  It's real.  It's happening.  It's NOW.  This is a thing, and you CANNOT ESCAPE IT.  It's like the flu but there is no vaccine for this, my pretties, oh no.  There's just some blonde intensity and incest COMIN' AT YA courtesy of netflix streaming and your good pal Erin, here to make sure that your holidays are not quite as merry and bright as you would like them to be.  We are doing it, and we are doing it now, and by doing it, I mean we are gonna watch ourselves a movie about some fucking blonde kids locked in an attic and playing Daddy Bad Touch with each other while their Slore of a mother gets herself whipped like a losing horse after that show Luck got cancelled.  And we're gonna drink while we do it, even me, even against the advice of, like, all the medical professionals everywhere, because have those medical  professionals ever SEEN Flowers in the Attic?  Have they ever read the montrosity of the book?  No.  No, they haven't, my friends.  Because they're medical professionals, which means they're highly fuctioning adults, which means that VC Andrews never had a place in their scarred, scared little childhood, not like us!  Not like us with our unholy need to read beat up paperbacks checked out from the library!  No!  They followed the rules and got good jobs and we broke the rules and now it's noon on Thursday and we're already counting down the hours until it's time for a glass of wine and The Vampire Diaries.  But it's okay!  Because we have other qualities.  That's what my mom always says.

Okay!  So here's how we're going to do this!  Because this MASTERPIECE OF MOVIE HISTORY is available on Netflix Instant Streaming, I am going to "Live Blog" this movie, as if I, Erin of FYA, were in your very own Living Room, saying my very own thoughts, as we watched this movie together.  So go home, queue up the film, and play along as we drink ourselves into a stupor over this film!  I'll include Time Stamps in my thoughts so you know just where I am in the movie.

Or, if you aren't at all interested in watching the film, eh, just read along and pretend what I say makes any kind of sense?  You can do that, too.  It's Advent, after all.  A TIME WHERE YOU GET TO CHOOSE HOW TO USE YOUR GIFT.  Only unlike, say, a YA novel, your gift isn't a super power.  It's just a drunk girl's ramblings about a movie containing incest.  HAVE FUN HO HO HO AND STUFF.

LET US NOW BEGIN.  I AM DRINKING VODKA AND GINGER ALE TO START.  FIND A DRINK OF YOUR CHOICE. 

 

0:46: "Grandmother's house."  What's with that grizzly old voice, Cathy?  You sound like a three pack a day smoker, damn. 

0:52: I'm enjoying all of these photos of the outside of Foxworth Hall, since that's a place that NEVER HAS ANY SETTING IN THE BOOK.

1:20: Ooh!  Rape Matress!  You know what they say; the rape matress shown in the first act is surely to be raped on in the third act!

2:07: Appropriately creepy-ass photo of Corrine, Chris, Cathy, Corrie, Carrie and Dead Uncle/Brother.  They look like they were manufactured in an Olan Mills factory.  Like, are they even real life?

2:12: Fade to Back in the Day!  Smaller Kristy Swanson and dopey ass Chris and the Twins all rush to greet Dead Uncle/Brother in their typical creepy way.  

3:16 "He loved us all, but Dad never let me forget that I was his favorite."  Followed by Dead Uncle/Brother coming into Carrie's closed bedroom.  Um, Carrie, being molested does not make you the favorite, honey.  I know this is hard to hear, but family members don't actually show you they love you with their penis.  I know; I know.  It's crazy talk! 

3:28: Jesus, even the music box Dead Uncle/Brother gives Carrie looks like a giant boner.  THIS MOVIE IS HILARIOUS.  But oooh, CORRINE AIN'T HAPPY.

4:35: It's time for Dead Uncle/Brother's party!!  Carrie can't figure out how to divide 36!  And then the cops come!  Why is everyone dressed like they're just off a Little House on the Prairie shoot?

5:50: It's time for everyone to move the hell out and go to Foxworth!  This narration is really throwing me off.  Adult Cathy sounds like Grizzly Adams or something.

6:49:  Corrine's already starting her whole, "Grandfather's totally going to take me back" shizz.  THIS IS NOT GOING TO WORK, CHILDREN.

7:35:  And now Cathy is talking about how if she'd had a pet then everything would have been fine?  Because it would have died and then she would know how to deal with her dad dying?  Wait, what?  Listen, you little shit.  Having your cat die when you're four teaches you that things die.  Having your DAD DIE is totally different!

8:57: There are viscious german shepherds at some sort of gatekeeper's property.  I do not remember this from the book!  Meanwhile, now everyone is dressed like a member of the Von Trapp family.

10:03: John the Crazy Butler is duly unimpressed by the kids.  I'm unimpressed by Cory.  I want to dropkick him into the field behind the house.  I'm glad he dies first.

10:30:  Grandmother sighting!  I REPEAT!  THERE HAS BEEN A GRANDMOTHER SIGHTING!  She is probably also wondering why her grandchildren are dressed like Von Trapps.  Do!  A deer!   A female deer!

11:48: And now we have our first sighting of the Attic room.  Which, I must remind everyone, is like 18 times bigger than most New York walk ups, has a working fireplace, hardwood floors, a bathroom and two super nice beds.  So STFU, fucking whiny brats.

13:00:  Oh, shizz, son, Grandmother's laying down some rules, yo!!  You know what that means!  Drink!!  In case you forgot the rules, real quick: drink anytime Grandma lays down rules, anytime Corrine lies, anytime someone gets punished, anytime there's incest, and anytime Cathy or Chris sneak out of their room.

16:29: Grandmother starts her day off with a little bit of God's wrath.  Her giant cubic zirconia earrings are distracting me.  They're like the size of Chris's nostrils.  Cory really has to go to the "bathwoom."   I want Cory to die a tortorous death. Arsenic poisoning is too good for him.  Grandmother totally spills the beans about Uncle/Brother.  I feel like she's letting this info go a little early in the game, right?  I mean, where's the lead up?  Now they KNOW they're Devil's Spawn and what's their reasoning for working with you?

18:58:  Ooh!  It's time for Corrine's sexy strip-tease/caning!  Man, the holidays are always so festive at Foxworth, aren't they?  I mean, I made rum balls and spiced pecans for my parents this week, but really what we should have done was whip each other, am I right folks?

20:03: Corrine shows up in the kids' room all welted over and crying because she is the WORST MOTHER EVER.  Sorry, lady.  You hide that shit until you can keep it tamped down.  Those are your kids.

20:34: Ooh!  Carrie's getting picked up by her hair and Cory's getting slapped!  Drink!  Drink!  And Grandmother's calling out rules!  DRINK ALL OF THE DRINKS!

21:16: Ooh, now Corrine has to remove her blouse and show her kids her sexy sexy whip marks.  Sexy incesty whip marks! 

22:31: Chris cleans up his mom's whip marks and she natters on about winning her father's love.  OH CORRINE YOU STUPID SLORE.

26:03: Chris is all, "Come share this bed with me and my boner, Cathy.  I'm wearing these sexy and very small shorts from the 1970s JC Penneys sports catalog."

27:21: ATTENTION ATTENTION:  Both the arsenic poisoning and the attic exploration has begun.  THIS MOVIE IS TAKING SOME REAL LIBERTIES WITH THE SOURCE MATERIAL!

28:49: There are actually CURTAINS of spider webs in the attic.  WHO WOULD WANT TO PLAY IN THAT.  Also this movie is trying to evoke a Goonies response with the wonder of this Attic, but it's totally not working.

30:12: Corrine is playing piano for her dying dad.  I can only imagine that, just off take, she spits out his love emissions and then asks if a jazzy uptempo number will suit him next.

31:24: Chris installs a barre for Cathy and Carrie hangs out on the Rape Mattress.  Don't hang out on the Rape Mattress, Carrie!  Rapes Happen There!

33:57: The kids are whining (drink!) and Chris gets all "there is a season, turn, turn turn, to be locked up in an attic by your crazy gold-digging mother, turn, turn, turn!"  I think that might have been in a previous draft of the song.

35:01:  oh!  oh!  Bathtub scene!  It's time, y'all!  It's time!  I mean, drink for the obvious incest, and maybe throw in a couple shots in for Chris's high waisted jeans, too.  But wait, the grandmother doesn't catch them?!  WHAT??  No, instead she catches the twins sleeping in one bed and Chris and Cathy in the other.  And then she dramatically breaks Cathy's music box.  Oh, that was way more disappointing than I was hoping for.  When does the tarring happen?!

38:36: Cathy and Chris remove a bar off the window in the attic and get out onto the roof.  Drink!  They climb down the rope to freedom!   But then the . . . German Shepherds come?  Honestly, German Shepherds are really nice.  They're not attack dogs at all. Just give them some bacon treats; they'll be fine. Then some super fake lightning happens and it's all not really that dramatic.  But the guard tower guy looks like a Union soldier haunting the property, so that's something, I guess.

44:39: Corrine's back!  There is a  . . . LOT of racist "art" up in that attic, I have just noticed.  Corrine is pissed the kids tried to run away.  She claims her dad's nearly dead.  (Drink!)  (Also, Corrine, put a bra on.)  Chris, as usual, does whatever Corrine wants, so she presses his head to her bosom.  Drink again!  Promise me you won't press anyone's head to your bosom this Holiday season, folks.  It's just not a good look for anyone, I think.  Just, like, wear a necklace of someone else's face, if that's the look you're going for.

46:48: Oh, good, it's time for Cory to catch the mouse.  Cory has, like, old man arms, they're really hairy and wrinkly.  I hate Cory so much.

48:05: Bathtime, again!  Maybe THIS is the bath that does it!  Probably so, since Cathy keeps touching herself.   And yep!  Here's Grandmother!  And Christopher yells at her to get out!

51:36: Cory goes missing but he's asleep in the attic.  Everyone goes to find him and when Cathy comes back Grandmother's waiting!  WITH HER SCISSORS!  Ugh, not as cool as the tar, movie.  Not nearly as cool as the tar.  But now here's Cathy, with her shag haircut that she cries and cries over.  GET OVER IT, CATHY.  It's just hair!  Plus it's the 70s so if you were outside right now your hair would probably look like that anyway.

55:00: Upstairs, the Arsenic Bunch wonder where the food is, while Downstairs, Corrine gets a new dress.  And Bart comes!  But he doesn't have a mustache!  WHAT EVEN IS THIS RIGHT NOW?  I AM SORRY, BUT NO.  BART MUST HAVE A FINE MUSTACHE.

55:48:  Ooh, time for the ritual blood-letting!  Always my favorite part of any incestuous movie!

59:17: Chris and Cathy sneak out (drink!) and they make it to Corrine's room.  SWAN BED!  Sexy sexy swan bed!  Corrine's fancy clothes are all on plastic hangers.  How declasse.  Why don't these two idiots try sneaking down to, like, THE KITCHEN and getting some food for their starving brother and sister to eat?  I mean, I'm just saying.

1:01:32: And now it's time to sneak into Grandfather's room.  Christopher thinks he's . . . dead?  Based on absolutely no evidence at all?  So he WAVES HIS HAND THREE FEET IN FRONT OF GRANDFATHER'S FACE?  Christopher is going to make an excellent doctor.

1:05:44: Cory has to "frow" up again and more arsenic's going onto the donuts, and Cathy's having prophetic dreams, because now apparently Cathy can FORESEE THE FUTURE except for the part where she can't foresee her own rape, the fact that she'll be raped again by her caretaker, the part where she'll marry him, the part where she'll sleep with her stepfather, her rape and abuse by her husband or that her son will become a crazy psychopathic arsonist at age 8.

1:08:19: Chris is diagnosing Cory using a dusty copy of the Phsyicians' Desk Reference, circa 1952, and hey!  Maybe I have arsenic poisoning!!  Thanks, Chris!  And then Corrine comes back but no one is happy to see her because she sucks so fucking much.  Also her hair is bloody stupid and I hate her.

1:09:30: I realize that there's nowhere for them to go, but they could really at least try to brush Carrie's hair once in a while.  The girl looks like a street rat in a junior high production of Les Mis.

1:10:53: Party time!  Bart proposes to Corrine in the middle of the party.  I can confirm he still doesn't have a mustache OR sandy brown hair.  Chris is as upset as I am, although his problem is that he's in love with his mother and my problem is that I require a fine attention to detai, even if said detail is to one of the worst books in the entire world.  That's okay, Chris; you have Cathy's bosom to rest yourself against!  Cathy sure has a lot of skimpy nightgowns for a fifteen year old child.

1:12:57: Oh, thank God; Cory's finally dying.  And Cathy backhands Corrine!  It's always a good part of the book; it's that one little part where Grandmother likes Cathy a little.  Grandmother's the best!  Carrie and her uncombed hair goes off to comfort the mouse by inadvertently poisoning him to death.

1:14:58: The weird Watch Tower guy is also on duty as a grave digger!  Bye, little Cory!  I'd say we hardly knew ye, but I felt we knew ye too much for my taste. 

1:16:15 Ooh!  The Watch Tower guy is digging FOUR graves!  That is STONE COLD, Corrine!  Also, how are you sure the other three will die so soon after?   You're banking a lot on this aresenic poisoning, lady. I mean, those graves could be rained in by the time their immune systems finally give up the fight.  Then your strange Watch Tower/Union Soldier ghost will just have to re-dig the graves, and if they got rained in once, then they're likely not going to be structurally sound, and will cave in a lot, and animals will be at the corpses and before you know it, someone's going to find an arm or a leg and then there's going to be a police investigation, Corrine!  You aren't thinking.

1:19:37: Chris overhears Corrine and the non-mustachioed Bart talking about their wedding and gets VERY UPSET.  Is it time to rape Cathy?  Why, no!  NO IT IS NOT.  Because there is no rape in this movie.  Yes, that's right.  It's time I let loose with the awful truth.  The makers of this movie decided to SHOW the Rape Matress but not have any rape actually happen ON the Rape Mattress.  I know.  I know.  I'M UPSET TOO.  Almost too upset to continue.  I MEAN, WHAT IS EVEN THE POINT?

1:20:28:  And now it's time to see . .  that it's Corrine that's been poisoning the kids all along!  But we knew that, of course.  The Grandmother goes to bring them their food and Chris hits her with a chair leg!  It's time to escape!  Because why not have a wild deviation from the book after all this?

1:21:49 Chris wants to escape but Cathy wants to tell everyone the TRUTH!  They are, by the way, appropriately dressed for the occassion of going to a wedding or busting out of a house.  I can't deal with Chris's vest, which looks like it was patched together by arthritic elves. But then they learn that Grandfather is dead!  Corrine was just going to keep them up there forever!  Well, that just riles everyone up.

1:24:05: It's a wedding!  Here comes the vacuous, money-guzzling, soul-sucking, child-killing bride!  Can anyone show just cause why this couple should not be wed today?  YES!  Han Solo's Ugly Dumb Brother, Laura Ingalls Wilder and, I don't know, Cosette's understudy can!  Also, Corrine's Flower Girl is SUPER PISSED that Carrie is there.  Check out those bitchy eyes she cuts her.  Like, "this is MY gig; who the hell are you?"

1:26:00: Chris's proof that Cory was a person is his dead mouse, which he dangles in front of Corrine and Bart.  The list of jobs at which Christopher would not be excellent at now stands at at least two: Doctor and Lawyer.  Also maybe Wedding Planner.  And then Cathy, eh, sort of kills Corrine by making her fall off of the stone balcony and then hang herself on her own wedding veil.  But that could happen at any wedding.  Which is why I don't plan to wear a veil, because I don't want to have any children I tried to murder via arsenic poisoning to throw me off a balcony.  Then again, if I was successful at said arsenic poisoning, they wouldn't be strong enough to throw me off a balcony, so really, this is on you, Corrine.  THIS IS ON YOU.

AND THAT'S IT!  It's over!  Well, that was really . . .  something, huh?  I feel this movie has done us a disservice!  I mean, where's our Rape on a Mattress?  Where's Cathy's weird kissing of Bart?  What's with Corrine's death?  Where's all the incest, damnit?!  WHERE. IS. ALL. THE. INCEST?

Well, the incest is in the books, so if you need a refresher, you can find them on our new and shiny book reports page (just look under V. C. Andrews).  And may your family be not NEARLY this fucked up!

Erin Callahan's photo About the Author: Erin is loud, foul-mouthed, an unrepentant lover of trashy movies and believes that champagne should be an every day drink. When she isn't drowning in a sea of engineers for whom Dilbert is still uproariously funny, she's writing about books, tv, the cult of VC Andrews and more.
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