Reviews, and insights into the shorter movies that are often forgotten. These may only be a few minutes long but provide fascinating raw independent talent, from the directors of tomorrow. low budget and surreal imagination is the key to a lot of the films, thought provoking and haunting.
Good evening! I hope everyone is still safe and doing their best to keep themselves and everyone around them safe from evil Covid.. I’m getting ready for an art exhibition so things will be brief, but between watching layers of paint try I managed to get back on track with my short movie obsession!
This deeply otherworldly short was made during one of global self isolation periods, starring it’s director Cameron Francis. He plays a secretive character trying to keep his sanity while in lock down, however the world around him is about to slip into a HP Lovecraft vivid altered state amped up with a christian end of days ,there’s nowhere to hide.
He’s used some brilliant camera angles and techniques to capture the energy of the characters, the sound effects are chilling and he might have just scared me on a few occasions. But what really caught my attention were the special effects which easily match that of the film I’m Harbinger Down (2015). I’m glad I didn’t see this while I was isolating myself.
So after a couple of weeks of neglect I’m back on board with the blog. The negative and vile feedback from Twitter has been processed and I’m dealing with that and moving on, so here’s a handful of interesting short movies and videos that I found interesting from the week.
Jasper de Bruin’s slow burning thriller follows the night shift of an enigmatic nurse who’s elderly patients are on critical care, and some aren’t expected to make it through the night, however her stalker has reason to believe the passing of the patients might not be that natural and will the overworked nurse be able to make it till dawn? heavy overtones of let the right one in along with an overbearing sense of doom in this chilling horror.
Technically this list should be about freedom as its the 4th of July a holiday that gets pushed aside more and more each year as we learn about what real freedom means… So I have just done my regular mix of Youtube and riveting shot movies…
Libby sells charms and spells to drug runners and dealers, her unique magical charms work in a similar way as Adolfo de Jesús Constanzo, she allows them to know which deals are dodgy and how to traffic, however it all goes awry when her sister turns up on her doorstep, proving that the witch has to look to her past before she can move on.
Harry Baker keeps his camera active as it follows Libber and her two helpers, it feels like a Found Footage movie as he bounces around rooms and hovers over shoulders. You’ll often find yourself holding a pensive breath as the tension rises through Libbiy’s spell crafting and once her sister makes an appearance and Libby begins to lose control over her powers there’s an epic shift in mood. The Sisters’ warning changes the soundtrack from new age to techno, the cool blue hues shift to a violent seedy red and the film ends with a bang.
It’s not clear what Harry is trying to suggest magic has done to this girl but it’s clear that she’s been through some kind of trauma and is spiraling in and out of control. What a brilliant character study and terrible journey.
Hello and welcome to a new Short Sunday list! I’ve been trying to find ways to catch up with my ever growing short movie list and I might have cracked it. Despite the many hours catching up with the Euro 2020 matches, my terribly intensive movie schedule I have managed to watch a handful of short movies also! And I’m delighted to say I’ve added in a lot of stop motion and claymation this week.
Inside the Human Lab – Claymation
I’ve still got my soft spot for Claymation and Stop Motion and I was uber happy to find this amazing channel, Joe Blandamer Claymations. This 3 minutes escapade investigates a vivisection lab, but with the tables turned and the animals, in this case an evil Mr Chimes is testing on a dim human, despite being a peta wet dream, it’s creative, moody and gory, what a delight.
Sadly I ran out of time to get a wider reaching list together but I’ve cobbled together a handful of themed shorts this week.. The theme is HP Lovecraft and I have to point out that while I understand the importance of HPLovecraft and his position in Horror history I can’t ignore the fact he was a disgusting racist and his work leaves a horrible taste in the mouth, but he started a mythos, a mood and theme of horror that has been built on and while the bigotry only slightly trickled into this work it’s worth noting that Right Wing groups still like to idolise the whitewashing that HPL called for and therefore it’s daunting creeping into his world with blind eyes.
With that said, and I will always add my distance from the man’s attitude, these delightful shorts show how the Cthulhu mythos and worlds of unknown horrors have eventually brought people together to be puzzled over and discussed.
The Teeth of the Stars
Originally crafted in 2009 and remastered in 2020, this delightful short movie seems to have a few issues in synching but otherwise it’s a really intriguing effort. Dropping the names of Redhook, Lovecraft and mentioning Stars in the first few minutes the atmosphere is correctly set.
There are distinct Carpenter influences, in both the heavy synth soundtrack and palette in the making of this Lovecraft inspired short. A man searches for many questions in a timeline that is constantly shifting. While trying to work out why the universe is gaslighting him, he’s hot on the heels of the mystery surrounding an elusive Lovecraftian character.
Without monsters, gore or crazy special effects a chilling cerebral tale unfolds as Mark MacFarlane directs his team into an untold madness.
Unfortunately it’s going to be a short list this week, there’s been so many extra hours at work and a million hours of babysitting and something has to give 😦 unfortunately it seems to be the two things that keep me going.. movies and art. But I do what I can.
Hunter Farris has conjured up a quirky haunted camera story. In this humorous horror, any person caught in this cryptic cameras view has to stay in it’s view to stay alive. It’s good to know this before you start making a movie, unfortunately this information comes too late and the latest crew start dropping like flies.
It’s definitely a different take in the subgenre of haunted media, but there’s a dedication to making, and the film feels professional and the touch of humor helps those who try to take their horror too seriously, to step back and enjoy a movie for it’s merits. Definitely worth watching this uncomplicated but effective short with tons of character, the Exorcist meets Ghost Camera.
Ashton Herrild successfully manages to unwrap a cracking story in his darkly comedic short that sees a young man, now exonerated, attempt to settle into his old life, but things are that simple. The youngster was accused of killing and eating his mother, now a strict vegan , he settles into a diner seat to have lunch with his brother but he’s still under suspicion from the entire town, including his remaining family but it’s a new secret addition to the diners burgers which may hold the key as to what’s going on and it’s a resolution which is bound to cringe you out and make you smile at the same time.
There’s a brilliant vibeance to the way in which Herrild reveals the story, as it slips in and out of reality, we begin to lose perception of what’s real along with the poor lead who’s struggling to grasp what’s happened to the place that he calls home. But it’s not confusing, instead it’s ridiculous and filled with Evil Dead style giggles. It’s a layered movie, mixing shocks and laughs as the vile conclusion is slowly dealt out, but even after the reveal you’re left wanting more and I can only hope that Herrild swings back with another movie soon as this is really great stuff.
Dillon Vibbart’s mini movie is a prime example of what indie cinema can achieve with the right mind behind it. This haunting story of a woman being tormented by demons in her dreams is outstanding, so expect to see it at the end of the year ok folks! Made on a healthy budget of 12K.
After experiencing some life threatening dreams a woman reaches out to a man who can enter her dreams to help her. Once in the dreams things don’t go exactly as you’d expect, but the battle is fought, but how will it turn out!?!
The doctor is played by Chris Attoh, and I am besotted with his acting skills as they blow the competition and elevate the film’s message. What starts out as something which any horror fan thinks they have cracked turns into something more poignant but that doesn’t mean it’s any less scary, in face the fear becomes more palpable. I can’t express how well this is filmed and executed, there are some really menacing long shorts which hold real tension, the characters are believable, the effects are kept to a minimum but what you see can’t be unseen and it doesn’t rely on jump scares and silly tactics to get under the skin. I hope this becomes a bigger film or that Vibbart is given more opportunities, but please keep Attoh!
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.
An enchanting tale of a man who collects animal parts for his folk magic, based on the real story of real-life physician John Harries (1785 – 1839) and directed by Zoë Dobson. There’s a masterful eye which captures the more atmospheric scenes turning this creepy horror into terrifying dark fantasy with a lot of body horror be it more of the snail variety it’s no less scary.
Blending ideas about farm life being more than just raising animals for slaughter and living more closely with the land vs the greed driven world of the city. Our silent smelly Cunning man has recently lost his beloved dog and a few animals, while those who shun him in the town just want the authorities to “deal with him” but somewhere in a locked book and magic circle there’s a greater gift than any of those city types would care to dream about.