short film review

Reviews and news about short films, short film festivals, reviews, links and guides to short films online,images from short films,directors,writers,cinemaphotographers. Copyright 2005, 2006 by Allan Maurer. All rights reserved.

Monday, February 25, 2008

THE HORROR OF IT ALL

OH, THE HORROR OF IT ALL!



The Nevermore Horror film festival in Durham, NC, has always presented excellent programs of horror themed short films, but the 2008 crop of entries surpassed even those of previous years.

Horror and science fiction short films are probably the single most viable of the short film genres following comedy shorts, which of course have been part of filmmaking from the start. All films were short films back in the beginning, and filmmakers can still learn plenty from silent short films about telling a complete genre story in short form.

Comedy horror, particularly Zombie comedy, is a subgenre of this short film subgenre that's increasingly notable at film festivals in both the short film and feature length entries. Short films, though, lend themselves particularly to comedy treatments.

"Prombies," a black and white homage to many other horror films as well as an accurate satirical take on what boys really want on prom night, as our reviewer, Nicole Black noted, is one of the cleverest takes on the whole zombie idea we've seen so far. Zombies, it turns out, provide a rotting canvas for metaphors of all types. George Romero's latest feature length "Diary of A Zombie," has been criticized for pounding home its idea that media has become our reality, and he pioneered the use of zombies to satirize modern life, such as consumer society ("Dawn of the Dead," the original version).

"Prombies" achieves this quite effectively, managing to throw in filmic homages to producer Val Lewton's shadow haunted B films of the 1940s ("Cat People,"), other zombie films, and the whole slasher genre. The jokes work extremely well. A line such as "He's eating her alive!" takes on double meaning in a laugh provoking context, for instance. The empty high school halls, shadowed and echoing, are a suitable horror setting. Fans of old 1950s TV shows such as Superman and B movies will recognize the much over-used stock suspense music, but it is quite appropriate here, its familiar rise and fall evoking the same sort of feel as the moody black and white images.

Still, "Prombies," manages about all the screen time it could sustain at this short length (briefest of the films discussed here).

"Gay Zombie," and the multiple-award-winning "Zombie Love," a musical with send-ups of Hollywood and Bollywood musical conventions, all work as short films, but lack enough substance to sustain feature length. They could actually benefit from judicious cutting even at their current lengths.

But I'm guessing that of all the short film genres, again, save comedy short films, the horror and comedy horror shorts will find real markets earliest. Today, the chance to see them, especially collected in group programs, remains one of the best reasons for attending film festivals internationally.--Allan Maurer

6 Comments:

  • At 2:11 PM, Blogger Brad said…

    This comment has been removed by the author.

     
  • At 12:00 PM, Anonymous Short Film Reviews said…

    I really like short films and horror genre is one of the most interesting to me.

     
  • At 8:58 PM, Blogger Justin Seibel said…

    Great site guys. I would love it if you would review my film. Kill, My Lovely is a film noir love story about a detective who falls in love with a murder suspect. Let me know if you're interested. I can get you a copy. You can see the trailer at:

    http://justinseibel.com/Kill,_My_Lovely.html

     
  • At 12:23 PM, Blogger Ranjit said…

    There are many factors work behind to make a popular
    film
    . It have been seen that high budget film always is not get success. Theme and
    acting is a proportional factors for a original film.

     
  • At 2:22 PM, Anonymous peter said…

    Katie Beth McPhail did a great job in this film!

     
  • At 11:46 AM, Blogger b´´´ said…

    a brazilian short film about a blind gay boy, rlly sweet:
    part 1: /watch?v=sZCDnHhZFms
    part 2: /watch?v=SPZ5atlY0Q4

     

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