The Silver Scream Fest provided a plethora of great horror shorts. When I was able to sneak into a block I was struck with how the shorts just seemed to keep getting better. These blocks were well put together and surpassed those of other film festivals I have been to. Many more deserve to be talked about, but here were some of the most notable that I saw.
Description: From the writer of Marvel’s Doctor Strange comes a story about an aging drifter who hunts fallen angels in a city collapsing into ruins. Society may have turned its back on him, but that doesn’t stop him from moving forward in his endless search. Directed by Nikhil Bhagat.
These aren’t your granny’s androgynous angels. As They Continue to Fall was one of the sharpest and most well made shorts of the festival. My only real complaint is that it was too short, I wanted more. It painted a world in five minutes but didn’t finish the story. I really hope there is something longer in the works. I wasn’t the only one who thought this, as the movie was given the “We Want More” award.
If nothing else we get to see more from writer C. Robert Cargill as he brings his work to the Marvel Cinematic Universe by contributing to Doctor Strange. Along with this, he wrote the much vaunted Sinister series.
Description: It’s Halloween night and Denny is going on a first date with a girl he met online. Once he arrives, however, he notices something is slightly off with her. As things get more and more bizarre, he realizes he needs to get out. Fast. Directed by Evan Sweet.
While you can tell that this movie is crafted with less experienced hands, it still manages to be incredibly creepy. The story was quiet and unsettling, building up to a satisfying and violent reveal. You’ll wish they had kept their masks on.
Description: In this delightfully demented homage to the golden age of horror movies, you will be advised on career paths for villains, where to put an evil lair, what kind of henchmen to choose and, of course, when to use your evil laugh. Dare you find out what sort of villain you would be…? Directed by Helen O’Hanlon.
This short was a fantastic deconstruction of villains. Terence Harvey, an infamous “that one guy” in films plays the supervillain that leads you through his lair, detailing the potential villain you could be, and ends it with dire consequences. This was Helen O’Hanlon’s first short, and she knocked it out of the park.
Description: During the zombie apocalypse a heroin addict runs out of drugs and must choose between waiting safely in a motel room until the rescue team arrives or risking her life searching for drugs outside.
This is pulp film at its finest. It might not have the fanciest sets or the most realistic zombie effects, but it uses them to full effect. When you see the woman digging into her former friend to get a baggie of heroin he swallowed, it kicks to a level of disturbing that is hard to match. Grainy, dark, and perfect for what it was, this film earned its “Grindhouse” award.
Description: In a world where wizards and witches are believed to be evil, Math, a young witch, has to save her best friend from being assaulted, without revealing her true nature. Directed by Tancredi Di Paola.
Sparks is an incredibly beautiful short film that is lacking dialogue but filled with heart. It takes only a few minutes to set a massive world in which witches are being persecuted and hunted down. It shows the fear of both sides, and creates a small bond between two roommates that is far stronger than a few actions and nods have any right to be. So much is implied here, and the young director Tancredi Di Paola should be very proud of his work.
Torture (Full film is in the link. Watch it!)
Description: A Jewel Thief is being interrogated through torturous means in order to reveal where he stashed the Bad Guy’s diamonds. When all the various torture techniques prove ineffective, the Bad Guy relies on his most trusted skilled technician to get the final laugh. Directed by Anton Gaskell.
The funniest short we came across at the Silver Scream Fest had to be Torture. It’s a grim play on tough guy interrogations and was a fantastic change of pace. This short is every torture scene you have ever watched and puts it so far over the top that you can’t help but giggle.
I just want to say great job to all of the film makers and the good people over at Famous Monsters of Filmland for their short selections. To any film makers that did not see your movie on this list, catch up with me on twitter, because I would love to see it if it is online somewhere.
Tony Southcotte: Tony hails from the Rocky Mountains somewhere around the state of Colorado. Possibly raised by grizzly bears, this gritty denizen of the arena now spends most of his time grappling with Java updates and dysfunctional RAM. With not much fiction under his belt, it might seem tempting to bet against Mister Southcotte, but an impressive knowledge of everything from PVC pipe to psychedelic drugs makes Tony a storehouse of fiction waiting to hit the paper. Plus, you know, there’s the possibility of him ripping you apart like a grizzly bear.