Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Mary: A Young Man Haunted by Guilt Meets a Mysterious Elderly Woman in This Eerie Horror Short

A razor-sharp look at the gap between trying to make ends meet and providing quality personal care for aged relatives as well as a chilling supernatural story, Mary, from codirectors Jo Rou and Dan Riordan, is an equally thought-provoking and spine-tingling psychological horror short. A year to the day that his mother Mary passed away, […]

Film Festivals Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] It Came from the Kitchen! [Final Girls Berlin]: Lighthearted Creature Feature Boasts Some Old-School Effects

We’ve all had those days, sometimes even weeks, when straightening up our living spaces just doesn’t rate high on the old to-do list, until something happens that makes it absolutely necessary. Jackie (Savannah Zito), the protagonist of writer/director Jessica Salgado’s creature feature short It Came from the Kitchen!, is having an especially hard time with […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] The Blood of the Dinosaurs: Joe Badon’s Latest Leap into Lunacy Hits the Surreal Jackpot Once Again

When reviewing a Joe Badon film, words such as “ersatz,” “systematically,” and “avuncular” will never work. Nor will attempting diatribes or didacticism. His films are like surreal gossamer coated with Dadaist treacle. His newest work is the short film The Blood of the Dinosaurs, a prologue to his upcoming feature film The Wheel of Heaven, […]

Film Festivals Foreign Films Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] You’re Dead Hélène [SLASH Film Festival]: Does This Romance Have a Ghost of a Chance?

Writer/director Michiel Blanchart’s Belgian/French short film You’re Dead Hélène (T’es morte Hélène; 2021) is a remarkable genre-blending effort that takes viewers on a ride through three different storytelling genres and a wide range of emotions.  Hélène (Lucile Vignolles) is in a complicated relationship with Maxime (Théophile Roux). She is having a hard time letting go […]

Film Festivals Foreign Films Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Tale of the Deaf [SLASH Film Festival]: Mesmerizing Russian Black-and-White Short Is a Gorgeous Gothic Horror

Writer/director Philipp Yuryev’s Russian short Tale of the Deaf is one of the most visually extraordinary films of this year. Shot in sumptuous black-and-white by director of photography Mikhail Kasaya, this gothic chiller is a diabolical delight. A deaf man (Russian rapper Husky) tries to entertain a tavern full of paupers with shadow play but […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] TOY TERMINATOR: Man vs. Puppet in Irreverent Horror Short

Director Matt Wisniewski’s puppet horror short Toy Terminator is his follow-up to the 2019 short film Pappy’s World, and somehow it is even more irreverent and mind-boggling than its predecessor.  Pappy the puppet was a maniacal Christmas present in that earlier short, and here he makes a return as the best friend of a human […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Laura Hasn’t Slept [FilmQuest]: The Face of Fear Awaits a Young Woman’s Slumber

Writer/director Parker Finn’s terrific short film Laura Hasn’t Slept combines the concept from the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise (along with other horror properties) of avoiding sleep so as not to confront a horrific entity with the theme of mental illness. The result is a stirring effort led by an incredible performance from Caitlin […]

Film Festivals Foreign Films Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Hungry Joe [FilmQuest]: People and Systems Fail a Distraught Mother Whose Son Has a Voracious Appetite

I strongly recommend watching U.K. horror short Hungry Joe on an empty stomach. Codirectors/cowriters Samuel Dawe and Paul Holbrook pull no punches in their 23-minute meeting of body horror and family drama, a tale of a child’s insatiable appetite and the trouble it brings to his family. As the short film begins, Craig (Joe Sims) […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] The Unvisited: Short Fantasy Film Takes a Lighthearted Approach to Issues with the Elderly and Their Families

Writer/director Rebekah Fieschi’s latest short film The Unvisited is a playful fantasy exploration of growing older and being separated from immediate family. Though the short has supernatural and horror overtones, the emphasis is on the messages the film delivers rather than shudders and shocks. An aging couple (Cathy Washburn and Kathi Bairnes) live with their […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Seek [FilmQuest]: Outstanding Design and Effects Highlight This Excellent Creature Feature Short

Director Aaron Morgan wrings the maximum creepy atmosphere possible in five minutes in his short film Seek.  This tale of a rest stop break gone terrifyingly wrong is also bolstered by convincing performances, terrific set design, and super creature effects. Argumentative sisters Heidi (Allisyn Snider) and Jordan (Clare Grant) are obviously on a road trip […]

Film Festivals Foreign Films Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] GOLEM [Warped Dimension Online Film Festival]: Clay Avenger from Jewish Folklore Rises Again in Effective Horror Short

In only about 4 minutes not counting credits, writer/director Ryan Cauchi’s Australian short horror film Golem spins an action-packed tale about the titular anthropomorphic clay creature from Jewish folklore while also setting the stage for a much larger story. The result is a gripping short creature feature boasting some fun monster effects. The set-up is […]

Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] The Tell Tale Heart [FilmQuest]: Poe Tale Shocks in Impressive Modern Setting

Director McClain Lindquist takes Edgar Allan Poe’s classic short story “The Tell-Tale Heart” and gives it a modern updating that is true to the source material but adds a new approach in his short film The Tell Tale Heart. The result is a fascinating character study of a narrator who speaks in 19th-century fashion while […]

Film Festivals Foreign Films Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] The Moogai (SXSW Online 2021): Child-Stealing Supernatural Entity Terrifies an Indigenous Couple in Eerie Australian Horror Short

Australian short film The Moogai won this year’s SXSW Jury Prize in the Midnight Short section, and for good reason. Writer/director Jon Bell’s harrowing short film is rich in spine-tingling atmosphere, with a gripping, meaningful story and solid performances. Sarah (Shari Sebbens) and Fergus (Meyne Watt) have a newborn baby, and Sarah begins seeing haunting […]

Film Festivals Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Alien Abduction (MidWest WeirdFest): Experimental Short Film Takes Unique Approach Regarding an Encounter with Extraterrestrials

No matter the number of extraterrestrial contact documentaries you have watched in the past, the chances are good that you have never seen one quite like the short film Alien Abduction (2021). It hovers somewhere in the planes of the experimental, pop art, and the outré. AV Super Sunshine and Philomena, members of the Wisconsin […]

Film Festivals Gruesome Reviews Super Scary Shorts Saturday

[Review] Your Monster (Final Girls Berlin Film Festival): An Ailing Woman Finds Support from an Unlikely Place

Writer/director Caroline Lindy’s horror comedy Your Monster is a sharp, sweet short film that explores relationships with lovers and friends — while wryly commenting on social topics such as gender neutrality — through the eyes and mindset of a young woman and the monster that has lived in her bedroom closet since she was a […]