I’ve become a little bit disillusioned with this category over the years. A lot of makeup jobs in film these days are for prosthetic effects, and you know what, that’s basically the same as visual effects in many ways. Perhaps the two disciplines should just be lumped together. But I’m not disillusioned enough to de-commission the category, so here goes.
- District 9: Peter Jackson productions have long been famous for their ability to mix both computer generated effects and more traditional makeup style effects. It appears that this skill has been passed on to Jackson’s Protégé Neill Blomkamp, who uses extensive prosthetic makeup to depict Wikus’ transformation into an alien creature.
- Drag Me to Hell: Sam Raimi is another makup veteran who spilled all sorts to red dyed corn syrup over the course of his Evil Dead series. Here he makes a really grotesque gypsy woman as well as an assortment of other creepy-crawly things and other bits of gross-out horror.
- The Road: Throughout The Road we are seeing the effects of the world’s end. This is pretty obvious in the landscape, which is torn up and wasted, but it’s also present in the look of the people. Everyone is malnourished and dirty, covered in soot and ash. Almost everyone has a long unkempt beard and their hair is also a mess.
- Sin Nombre: This South American set film depicts the harsh realities of gang violence in the third world. There’s some basic action makeup here but the real accomplishment is that the gang members all have really extensive tattooing that some of the gang members are wearing. The makeup artists had to apply temp tattoos every day and maintain continuity throughout.
- Thirst: This South Korean vampire film features extensive bloody wound effects as the creatures of the night puncture their victims and drink their blood. The bigger challenge and thus bigger accomplishment would have to be the way the main character’s disease is rendered, which meant extensive makeup to the face.