UNTO DEATH – Short Film Review

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UNTO DEATH

  • RELEASE DATE: Coming Soon (Click Here for More Info)
  • WRITTEN BY: Jamie Hooper
  • DIRECTED BY: Jamie Hooper
  • STARRING: Tim Blackwell, Nathan Dean Williams, Gabriella Montrose

-Reviewed by Daniel XIII

A priest enters a forbidden relationship as a creature stalks the night in the new short film UNTO DEATH from writer/director Jamie Hooper.

As you may have guessed from my helpful lil’ intro above; a priest begins a same-sex relationship that begins to show the cracks in his faith when confronted with the strength of love. Well creeps; let me assure you, that faith gets stretched even further when a creature of legend (and no, I’m not spillin’ the beastly beans here as to what that madcap monster may be) makes it’s presence known. How will this affect our protagonists’ relationship; and what will be left of their faith in God at the end.

Now; if all of this seems like a heady brew for a flick that runs roughly 8 minutes, you are right…but the damn thing is so well made and acted you actually get the feeling that you watched a complete feature (a hurdle so many shorts fail to overcome).

The performances of the leads, Tim Blackwell and Nathan Dean Williams are nuanced, passionate, and truly draw you into what you hope will not be a relationship that ends in complete and utter madness.

As wonderful as the acting is, the cinematography and storytelling of Jamie Hooper manages to balance being incredibly tight (a necessity with a run-time of this length) and amazingly artistic. Truly gorgeous stuff on display here my fiends.

Also of note are the excellent score by Bernard Herrlurn and the impressive make-up effects of Frances Darvell White.

To sum this all up; UNTO DEATH is one of the best fright flick shorts I have ever laid my eerie eyeballs upon! See it as soon as you can, and keep an eye (or most likely two) on Jamie Hooper; this dude has a lot to offer our beloved horror biz!

 

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NEON -Short Film Review

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NEON

  • RELEASE DATE: Playing Film Festivals Now (Click Here for More Info)
  • WRITTEN BY: Mark J. Blackman
  • DIRECTED BY: Mark J. Blackman
  • STARRING: Joe Absolom, Kerry Bennett, Fraser James, James Kermack, Bill Hutchens

 I don’t get a lot of short films to review in the ol’ Crypt o’ XIII; so when I do I always assume I’m in for something completely unique; such was the case with the flick under the examination of my eerie eyeballs today, NEON.

NEON is at its core a story about a relationship between a woman (in this case a comely office worker) and a man (a grim, bald headed fellow) that is related during a phone call intercut with scenes of the dialog at hand. Of course this being The Outre Eye; this is no simple love affair, as our Mr. Clean surrogate is much more than meets the eye. Eye popping visuals, strange powers, and metaphysical goings-on ensue.

The first thing that will hit you about NEON is how absolutely gorgeous it looks. For a short it has the style, shots, and lighting of a full length Hollywood blockbuster, and is filled to the brim with rain soaked neo-noir atmosphere punctuated by humming neon illumination. I mean I’m assuming writer/director Mark J. Blackman didn’t have some sort of mountain of money sitting in a big green money mountain pile to make this flick (and if he did, more power to ‘em); but the look he has achieved with this short is truly laudable!

If you see NEON playing at a festival near you; do not hesitate to check it out. I can almost guarantee you will be impressed with everything on display; from visuals to storytelling. Hopefully we’ll see plenty more genre material from Blackman, in my opinion he is a vibrant new creative force in our lil’ corner of the pop culture landscape!

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BATAILLE DE SANG – Short Film Review

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BATAILLE DE SANG

  • RELEASE DATE: Advance Review (Premiering at the Terror Expo October 9th in Johnson City NY, Cable Access in Binghamton NY on Halloween weekend, Online Halloween Night. Head Here for Details)
  • WRITTEN BY: Mark Dickinson
  • DIRECTED BY: Mark Dickinson
  • STARRING: Marquis DeBlood, Wayne W. Johnson, Greta Volkova

Each Halloween season, an intrepid group of filmmakers, led by musician, actor, and all around cool ghoul Mark Dickinson, head out into the vast, untamed, wilderness of Binghamton, New York and produce another chapter of the continuing adventures of the vicious vampire, DeBlood (click here to catch up)! This year’s chapter is titled BATAILLE DE SANG, and it continues the formula of monster mayhem and silent movie pastiche!

In last year’s episode, DeBlood battled the nefarious Dr. Lycos (who just so happens to be a werewolf as well) and his creature, but the devious doc slipped away into the forest escaping the blood suckers’ clutches. BATAILLE DE SANG picks up with DeBlood catching up to Lycos, now in his fang and fur mode, and engaging in a pitch battle. Meanwhile, a femme fatale of a vile vamp is snatching babies from a local village. Well soon our be-fanged anti-hero crosses paths with this comely lass and discovers she is a “child” of vampire numero uno; Count Dracula himself! It becomes readily apparent that ol’ Big D and D.B. don’t exactly get along too well, and add Dr. Van Helsing into the mix and things get downright calamitous. Fangs are bared, bats fly free, and stakes are hurled before this baby ends!

While a micro budgeted affair, BATAILLE DE SANG (like its predecessors ) is filled to the brim with heart and fun, and every scene shows just how much the folks involved really love and revere the silent shockers of yore. You won’t go wanting for monsters in these things either, which is a huge plus for your’s cruelly.

If you’re looking for something to get those ol’ Halloween-y juices flowing (that doesn’t sound right) this year, or are looking for something to play during your Samhain shin-dig, BATAILLE DE SANG is just what the (mad) doctor ordered; it’s silent, violent, and spooky…sounds like my ex…anyway, check this out creeps, I think you’ll dig it for what it is, and as a bonus for all of you cheap bastards (a.k.a. my entire audience) it’ll be free to watch!