Poundcake

Poundcake (2023)

Poundcake had its international première on Fri 25 Aug at FrightFest Someone is terrorising the streets of contemporary New York City. Like Jason Voorhees, (who notoriously visited Manhattan), Michael Myers, or Leatherface, this pattern killer comes with his own iconic headgear (a gimp mask) and weapon (chain). Still, far from slicing up young co-eds, or…

Bliss of Evil

Bliss of Evil (2022)

[note that, after this review was written, a new murder set-piece, which I have not seen, has been added to the very beginning of Bliss of Evil] With his earlier features Status Quo (2013) and Louie Louie (2018), writer/director Joshua Morris has become associated with romance, but the bed with which his latest feature Bliss…

Ash and Bone

Ash and Bone (2022)

The opening titles of Ash and Bone are impressionistically intercut with images of a young, terrified woman (Denise Emilia Sandulescu) with a splash of blood on her white top, as she limps through dark woods, and flags down a car only to realise – too late – that her pursuers are inside. She is summarily…

The Ledge

The Ledge (2022)

The Ledge had its UK première at the Glasgow FrightFest 2022, and was first published by VODzilla.co The night before Kelly (Brittany Ashworth) and her friend Sophie (Anaïs Parello) are due to scale the dangerous face of Antelao, highest pinnacle in the Dolomite Mountains of northeastern Italy, they are joined at the complex of cabins…

Vicious

For the Sake of Vicious (2020)

For the Sake of Vicious first published by VODzilla.co For the Sake of Vicious opens with a sequence which, for all its lack of context, is a good index of what is to come. A man wakes up surrounded by other bodies on a basement floor, only to be knocked out by another man standing…

El Apego

El Apego (The Attachment Diaries) (2021)

El Apego (aka The Attachment Diaries) opens with a tracking shot that follows, from behind, a pair of legs in high heels, walking along a roughly cobbled pavement in heavy rain at night. This is pure film noir – an impression greatly aided by the strict monochrome presentation – yet this woman’s progress is intercut…

We Had It Coming (2019)

We Had It Coming opens with two programmatic sequences. In the first, Katja (Sofie Holland) is woken by the sound of a hardcore porn clip landing on her phone – a video in which, by implication, she features. She then, after grimly donning the transparent platform shoes that are part of her work costume, hangs…

Sadness

The Sadness (2021) at Fantasia

The Sadness has had its North American première at Fantasia 2021 New outbreaks of the undead have been infecting cinemas across the world for the last two decades, and even if Taiwan ought, as an island state, to be relatively protected, it has not proven wholly immune – perhaps as a sign of a politically…

Butchers

Butchers (2020)

The two Watson brothers, Owen (Simon Phillips) and Oswald (Michael Swatton), are out burying their recently deceased mother in the snowy ground, when they spot a car breaking down on the nearby road – and opportunity as well. Shortly afterwards the car’s driver Steven is dead, and his girlfriend Celeste is suspended by chains in…