A NIGHT OF HORROR (2015)
Directed by Enzo Tedeschi (“Life Imitates”), Bossi Baker (“Hum”), Rebecca Thomson (“I Am Undone”), Justin Harding (“Point of View”), Evan Randall Green (“Dark Origins”), Carmen Falk (“Ravenous”), Goran Spoljaric (“The Priest”), Matthew Goodrich (“Scission”), Nicholas Colla and Daniel Daperis (“Flash”)
Written by Enzo Tedeschi (“Life Imitates”), Bossi Baker (“Hum”), Rebecca Thomson & Claire D’Este (“I Am Undone”), Justin Harding & John Hill (“Point of View”), Evan Randall Green (“Dark Origins”), Carmen Falk (“Ravenous”), Goran Spoljaric (“The Priest”), Matthew Goodrich (“Scission”), Nicholas Colla and Daniel Daperis (“Flash”)
Starring Bianca Bradley, Jessica Collins, Abbe Ertel Magid, Bill Sarkisian, Jane Howard, Karissa Lane, Nicole Simms, Peter Higginson, Jessica Hinkson, Kristy Kennedy, Jane Elizabeth Barry, Rosie Keogh, Paul Vorrasi, Darrin Davies, Kaylea Caulfield, Erin Fleay, Pauline Grace, Max Tornello, Mark Robert, Bridget Williams, David Macrae, Lucia Emmerichs, John Flaus, Jessica Gower, Steve Hayden, Emily Wheaton, Rachel Soderstrom, Rhys Thomas, Pod Poduska, Jade Soderstrom, Sequoia Pather
Find out more about this film here
A NIGHT OF HORRORS is that type of film which compiles the short works of 10 international filmmakers, mostly Australian, and puts them all together in one feature length film. A NIGHT OF HORROR is linked together loosely by segments featuring a woman (WYRMWOOD’s Bianca Bradey) wandering aimlessly though one room to the next which has something to do with the short film that is about to play. While the wraparound sequences aren’t the meatiest, they still do their job competently linking the whole film together.
The first segment, “Hum” is about a woman who hears a low, indistinct hum in her apartment and no matter what she does, she can’t get rid of it. This descent into madness shortie is a decent opener. I love the way this film starts out, with something ominous and mysterious going on. As things get more surreal, things start to get a little weird and I don’t know if I liked the surreal way it ended up, but the trip there was creepy and atmospheric. Director Bossi Baker is patient with this nerve-racking short.
The tone switches to gruesome satire as a plastic surgeon literally falls apart at the seams as she gets ready to operate on her patient in Rebacca Thomson’s “I Am Undone.” This one is a fantastic body horror as the surgeon gorily loses her false bits and pieces and goes to great lengths to get them back. This is a clever and slick little splatterfest.
The best of the bunch in this film is Justin Harding’s “Point of View,” which I would not have liked so much if not for the fact that the filmmakers acknowledge that the short was inspired by DOCTOR WHO’s “Blink” episode. This one follows a mortician fleeing a reanimated corpse of a pregnant woman who only moves when she looks away from it. The hag corpse is incredibly terrifying and the acting is absolutely fantastic. Cleverly edited and pants-shittingly scary, this one had me curling my toes and will most likely cause you to watch it through your fingers.
THE PACK screenwriter Evan Randall Green offers up “Dark Origins” which is reminiscent of the old Australian flick THE UGLY. As in that film, a psychiatrist interviews a patient who believes dark creatures in the periphery are causing the horrors of her life. The short opens ominously as the camera slowly zooms into a playing tape recorder of the first session before skipping to the present session. This one is edited crisply and patiently unfolds until the gripping final second.
Carmen Falk’s “Ravenous” is a simple but horrifying story of a girl trying to take care of her insane grandmother whose appetite seems to be unquenchable. This one is gory as hell and isn’t afraid to go to uncomfortable places. Close ups on meat of various kinds and mouths eating said meats makes things downright stomach churning.
The Clive Barker-esque “The Priest” is a fantastically lurid short about a woman contemplating adultery on a train ride home that seems to be destined for hell. The imagery in the strobe lit train, specifically the titular scar-faced Priest (APOCALYPTIC’s David McCrae), are nightmarish and perverse in this moralistic tale from Goran Spoljaric.
The most elaborate and gorgeous short of the bunch is the waking nightmare called “Scission,” a tale about a lost mother, a dead son, a mourning father, and two little girls attempting to understand it all. Drenched in terrors from the darkest hours of night and fascinating shots of Australia’s unique wildlife, this is a fantastically vivid little horror from Matthew Goodrich.
Finally, a ghost story called “Flash” ends up the film. This one feels a little too truncated, as if it might have made for a better feature length film, but still manages to deliver some potent scares and ghoulish imagery.
As a whole, this is an extremely strong compilation of horror shorts. Varied in tone, every one of them is memorable and creative in their own way. This is labeled as volume one of A NIGHT OF HORROR. Here’s hoping there are many volumes to come.