A jaded film actor challenges an ancient Chinese Demon in this comedic short film. Starring the legendary Richard Ng, the film was shot over 2 days in Hong Kong by Simon Yin.
Incorporating a lot of popular Asian folklore and pop culture the movie is quite brilliant in it’s delivery of a slightly obvious but well crafted story. There’s a lot of different filming styles combined together as the movie jumps into a found footage style from time to time as it follows a lively youngster who’s actively studying the ventran actor on his 444th dead scene. Luckily the aged actor is generally pissed off at the annoying kid following him and all the interruptions and begins to make a point that folklore is nonsense and begins to act up.
It’s a classic story of someone who challenges the unknown, and is surprised when it bites back. WIthout the laughs it does have a creepy edge but it’s hardly horror.
The Voice In Your Head
Directed by Graham Parkes this hilarious short is just as disturbing as it is funny.. if you find this kind of thing funny. I can imagine it’s going to rub a few people up the wrong way as it deals with some crazy ideas of mental health but wow it’s so much fun to watch.
Following the nightmarish life of a man who’s stalked by cripping voices in his head, embodied by a foul shouting man in a green suit, he attempts to get by day by day with the oppressive speech, from the second he wakes up until he goes to bed this bully is just there, over his shoulder talking down at him, until one of his work colleagues speaks out about it and the movie takes a huge dramatic shift.
While it’s bizarre and funny, I find the film does speak about how we all try to cope without inner demons, trying to bury them and carry on regardless rather than talk, it’s not the best advocate for such a situation but the more we broach these subjects the more comfortable we’ll be with them in the future right?
Dig your own grave
Every now and again there comes a time in a man’s life when he has to put his guards down and be brutally honest. When it comes to this bizarre tale of a hitman and victim told to dig his own grave in the desert.. there’s no better time than the present.
The comedy is black, well timed and somehow doesn’t distract from the drama, which is surprisingly strong and fascinating at times. Once the victim has been released from the car boot and strapped to a shovel, he has to dig, there’s an argument about the type of shovel and questions about why this has to happen but it’s obvious, the victim should have paid up and the man with the gun to his head is being paid to make sure he’s never seen again but through the power of honest talking the two men seem to find an outlet for their stress and fears, but will this new found kinship change the outcome?
Kirk Larsen has really built a a genuinely funny and challenging movie, with a true brilliant chemistry between the two characters they manage to carry this movie from bizarre to bizarre AND brilliant. the technical ability of the filming is spot on and if he’s not making features already then he really needs to be given a chance soon.
In the Walls
Aaron Fradkin creepy short about a woman living alone in a new apartment takes on a lot of tropes we’ve seen before but does manages to twist them a little bit into something more modern and at times atmospherically terrifying.
We all know that if you move into a new apartment then you’re basically going to be slaughtered so call a priest, set up cameras and be prepared to burn the place down at any time.
In this chilling tale the young woman notices a lot of “things” going on, but it’s mostly put down to rats, but how does this explain the footsteps and bleeding walls. There’s a cracking series of scares which involve a sinister smiling face, it keep reappearing when you least expect it, and be sure to keep an eye out on the background at any time, there’s always something to catch your eye.
Fradkin really amps up a haunting atmosphere with the use of whispered voices, banging jump scares and some really cool acting. There’s a solid soundtrack to accompany all this which helps to lull the audiences away from the jump scares and this pays off so well in this layered gem.
Get the Hell out
This strange comedy from Comedy A Go Go is outrageously funny.. a trio of unusual priests turn up to help a possessed girl, their approach is quite unethical and damned right strange.
The set up sees the “team” exorcise the young girl by pouring the spirit out of her and into one of them, then beat it out with uppercuts and baseball bats, but while the first exorcism goes it allows the audience to understand the set and even offers an insight into how exorcisms are connected, but the next case.. well the next case if different.
Get the Hell Out is so brilliant, there’s a touch of comedy that would settle into Evil Dead. one minute the guys are being deeply philosophical about life and death and the next they are arguing about where to get burgers. I really dig the mood in this this and I wanna see what they do next!
Queen of the Dead
There’s something magical about greyscale movies, and there is certainly something really charming about this mini tribute to this bizarre gothic horror inspired by the 1940’s film of the same name. Director Ayrton Carrazco really illuminates his story with a great retro feel to the decor and a fantastic foreboding atmosphere.
Starting out silent there’s a slow addition of dialogue from the lead which definitely shook me as her voice didn’t match her powerful persona at first, but Trista Robinson is such a stellar actress and manages to develop her role to suit the changing mood of the film.
What starts as a woman returning home to bury her mother and collate her belongings, turns into an occult horror when she realises she’s being stalked by a cult, much like The Void these mysterious masked figures just seem to appear and chill the blood. Eventually during one of these attacks her Uncle who’s now a priest ,turns up to help.. but help how?
It’s a film that keeps giving, it’s trippy and borders on psychotropic but doesn’t go fully Kenneth Anger in heavy symbology and glittering sexuality but it has a wild retro occult edge on it. Definitely worth the slightly longer running time to watch it unfold.
Sensitive movie about abuse and gaslighting, as a couple settle down for a celebratory drink the worrying signs begin to show.. The bruises covered by makeup, the worrying massage hidden between the lines.
Danny Gibbons has really made a poignant message with his debut short that shows the often overlooked side of abuse and its repercussions. I’m not sure if it’s going to help change anyone’s life, but if it does then that’s a massive bonus, what it will do is help how we think about these situations and the people involved and in turn that’s got to help right?
A grieving man gets an unexpected phone call from his deceased wife who gives him a set of instructions on how he can be with her again, but we all know that in grief the paranormal trickers are all out in force to make the best of a shit situation which is what starts to happen in Aria Jackson’s short movie that really digs deep into the psyche.
There’s an Urban Legend in London about a Cursed Bar
CreepsMcPasta is back with a thought provoking tale about a mysterious bar that pops up only to grab a new victim but it always leaves someone to tell it’s tale. This is a great story for those who are looking forward to going back into the music venues of any city once the Lockdown is fully over.. I think I might stay a bit longer.. After all, we all know London has a long list of mysteries and I don’t want to be one ha ha!
The Pit of Despair Experiment
Shrouded Hand is incredibly adept at finding those stories which even I haven’t heard about and I assume myself to be on top of the strange and weird.
This video tells the story of the fucked up experiments of Harry Harlow who basically ruined generations of monkeys in labs to discover what we already knew, isolation, torturing children and babies generally makes for terrible mental health in adults. *sigh*
I’m happy to learn about such things but I did need a moment to get myself together after watching, let that be your trigger warning.
Zodiac Constellations Are Stupid (+I Hate My Phone)
Grade A Under A is back with another down to earth info video about Constellations.. so it turns out that I am no longer the Cunt Pouring Water but now I am a photogenic Tampon, find out your sign..
Unsolved : The Strange Case of Joshua Maddux
ReignBot is back (in 2019) with a story that I heard about but didn’t get all the details, if you’ve not had a chance to get up to speed with the case of the body found in the fireplace.. lets see if you can work out what might have happened.
I’m a Cinema Usher. We Have Some Strange Rules
So being such a film addict I’ve spent a lot of time in cinemas all over the world and I do love the idea of creepy Cinema Lovers and Strange Tales (although in all fairness I prefer to learn about them when I’m not there). This creepy and slightly lengthy story runs like a Final Destination film as a newbie employee struggles to deal with the everyday paranormal activity going on in his workplace. A really strong story with lots to consider, definitely could become a really awesome movie.
I’m Really Starting to Hate My Mom’s New Boyfriend
There’s an edge to this story, something that reminds me of Outer Limits of Twilight Zone. The story details how a couple of kids are deeply upset about their mothers new boyfriend who wants to turn their room into a new office and berrates the woman daily, afraid for their futures and moved by the tears of their mother they pair come up with a plan..
Truly disturbing story that really kicks in with it’s twisted bitter ending.
Hopefully you enjoyed this week’s list, if there are any short movies that you can recommend please let me know.
You can find a list of all my Short Movie Roundup’s here.