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Short Cuts: The Horror Short Film Round Up for January

Friday, January 25, 2019 | Short Films

Happy 2019, fair readers!  I hope you’re starting off the new year in spooky fashion, and we’ve got another slate of great horror shorts to kick-start the creepy vibes.  Enjoy!


Willa (2019)
Length: 15 minutes Director:  Corey Mayne Starring:  Adrian Jaworski, Kelsi Mayne, Nick Szeman, Madison Seguin
I’ve looked forward to catching this one ever since I got to interview director Corey Mayne and producer Barbara Szeman about how their wish to adapt a Stephen King short story turned into one of the biggest independent short film productions of all time.  Following a group of friends and band mates on a train ride to their first big gig, the story’s real focus is couple Willa and Dave.  When Dave awakens to find the train has stopped, he’s disturbed to find that Willa has disappeared.  What plays out is a sequence that plays both eerie and bittersweet.  Keep an eye out for this one.
Where to find it:  Making the festival rounds.  Watch the trailer here.


Whispers (2013)
Length: 8 minutes Director:  Max Isaacson Starring: Josh Elliot
What’s more unnerving than watching a man slip into madness in a dank, dirty cellar?  I’d say you could do worse than adding a bunch of rats to the mix.  It seems that director Max Isaacson would agree, as this movie abounds with close-ups of gnawing vermin only slightly less disturbing than the man who spends the length of the film obsessed with them.  Now, I will give fair warning:  those with an aversion to disturbing imagery involving animals may want to look away.  But the credits assure no animals were harmed in the filming of the movie.  I don’t know for certain, however, the same can be said for lead Josh Elliot.
Where to find it:  Streaming on the BroSis Pictures website.


The Prolonged (2018)
Length:  12 minutes Director:  Will Jones Starring:  Michelle Carroll
Will Jones takes a spartan approach in his film about a girl staying the night in strange place where even stranger occurrences take place.  There’s not much production polish, even down to the minimally dressed room that actually looks like it could be a dorm room.  But that adds to the unsettling nature of the film.  There’s definitely something in Jones’ work, and I look forward to seeing what he can do in the future.
Where to find it:  Making the festival rounds.  Watch the trailer here.


Wrong Number (2018)
Length:  13 minutes Director:  Tiago Teixeira Starring:  Ellie Woodruff-Bryant, Nicholas Anscombe
Dreams can really do a number on our psyches, particularly when our subconscious shows us those things that we fear may come to pass when we wake up.  But what happens when the reality turns out to be so much worse than the dream?  Such is the case in Tiago Teixeira’s film about a couple whose relationship is strained by the woman’s late-night visions.  The dread oozes through this entire film, with Teixeira even letting it hang uncomfortably through the credits. 
Where to find it:  Making the festival rounds.  Watch the trailer here.


Transmission (2017)
Length: 17 minutes Director:  Varun Raman and Tom Hancock Starring:  James Hyland, Michael Shon, Kelby Keenan
I’ll be honest.  I’m not one hundred percent sure I understand everything that happened in this movie.  But I am one hundred percent sure that understanding isn’t required for this movie to creep you the hell out.  Co-directors Varun Raman and Tom Hancock instill the short with a demented glee, a sensibility James Hyland runs with as the sinister Dr. Sam. He’s clearly enjoying himself as he torments Leonard, his captive played by Michael Shon with a sense of haggard exhaustion that we in the audience can’t help but feel ourselves. 
Where to find it:  Streaming on Vimeo

Bryan Christopher