Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Sean Kelly

BITS 2017: Pre-Film Shorts

Here are the shorts that preceded the features at the 2017 Blood in the Snow Film Festival.

Paint the Town Red
Andie (Allison Klause) and Josephine (Ariel Hansen) receive tickets to an exclusive new club, however something feels off. Paint the Town Red is a well-produced short film, though I do think it drops a few too many hints and puns about the true nature of the club, which results in little surprise when the horror starts.

In a post-apocalyptic world, a marauder seeks revenge against a group of thugs. Marauder is a short film that is obviously referenced by Mad Max and it does a good job at building this post-apocalyptic world. The film also features some well done fight scenes.

Following their date, Jessica (Emily Alatalo) and Billy (Jordan Gray) are attacked by a group of masked assailants, during which it is revealed that they both are hiding secrets. From director Christopher Giroux (Dead All Night) comes a short film that is influenced by 1990s slasher films, with an interesting little twist. In fact, it would probably to a spoiler to say exactly what the title of Scraps is referring to. However, I will say that it is an entertaining short film.

Crux: Black Sol Empire
It is often said that the devil can be found at the crossroads: it is the proverbial meeting point of good and evil. Crux is an animated short film that doesn't have a story per se, but is instead a series of horrific images. This is a very surreal short film that plays out like a fever dream.

The Wolf
Gabriel (Patrick Gauthier) and Sarah (Sara Sue Vallee) spend time at a cabin to work out their relationship issues, however the owner (Mario Saint-Amand) has other ideas. The Wolf is a smart little short film with the home-invasion elements of The Strangers mixed with a few interesting twists.

A little boy journeys into darkness to discover his true calling. An short, but sweet animated short filled with rhymes and gore, Jason is a quite entertaining watch.

Alice, Alone
Alice (Morgan Kohan) is constantly home alone, while her fiance is too busy. As time goes on, she begins to breakdown mentally, while also overhearing the fights of her upstairs neighbor, prompting Alice to take action. Alice, Alone is a film that tackles loneliness in an interesting fashion. With Alice being the only character seen for most of the film, it is quite ambiguous when the things she sees or hears are really happening or just in her head.

Destruction Makes the World Burn Brighter
A young couple in the not so distant future find their secret existence threatened when reserve runs low. Destruction Makes the World Burn Brighter takes a look at what life for an interracial lesbian couple might be like in a post-Trump world. This is short that combines real life horror with a bit of a "movie horror" gory twist.

Human Cattle
From the people behind The Butcher Shop special FX house comes a proof of concept short for what is essentially an exploitation film version of Cannibal Holocaust (if Cannibal Holocaust wasn't already considered an exploitation film). Featuring much gore, scantily clad women, and some sort of reptilian monster, Human Cattle is more or less a promise of things to come. However, I am sold on this concept if it does become a feature.

Talking Heads
A woman goes to great lengths to be beautiful. Alyx Melone has been very busy this year, both starring in the feature Blood Child and directing and starring in this short film, which can be seen as a twist on the premise of The Stepford Wives. With no dialogue and a jazz based score, Talking Head is dependent on Melone's facial expressions to tell the story and she does a good job doing so.

While under the supervision of her sister Eli (Janice Kingsley), Olivia (Sienna Mazzone) was lost in the woods overnight. While she was found the next day, she didn't come back alone. Despite the title, I don't know much Banshee is related to the ghosts of Irish folklore, who typically appear as omens of death. However, Banshee is still an effectively creepy film, with a few jump scare moments.

Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described ├╝ber-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).