DAY 4 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Phil·a·del·phi·a’ (2014)

DAY 4 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Phil·a·del·phi·a’ (2014)

Scene from Phil·a·del·phi·a (2014 short horror film)
Scene from Phil·a·del·phi·a (2014 short horror film)
Scene from Phil·a·del·phi·a (2014 short horror film)

31 days. 31 films.

WHAT’S ON THE MENU FOR ‘PHIL•A•DEL•PHI•A’: For our fourth day of the festival, time for a change in tone. Today’s selection is a wistful, evocative, elegiac invocation of a time after an apocalyptic invasion. The cinematography is gorgeous, the pace measured, the tone sombre and resigned. You won’t find any jump scares in this one. But you may find something deeper and more meaningful.

Two brothers strive to survive in an invaded world, looking for safety from sound-seeking extra-dimensional beings.

Phil·a·del·phi·a was written and directed by Broadway, and stars Chase Ramsay, J.J Shurbet, and Alvis Broadway. Pay close attention to Shurbet’s voiceover. It’s extraordinary, especially for an actor so young. Enjoy the ride. RUNTIME: 4:50


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DAY 3 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Where Is It’ (2017)

DAY 3 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Where Is It’ (2017)

Image from Where Is It (2017) horror short
Image from Where Is It (2017) horror short

31 days. 31 films.

WHAT’S ON THE MENU FOR ‘WHERE IS IT’: The proliferation of smartphones has made a serious impact on the horror genre. No longer can writers fully isolate characters without writing in some hackneyed “NO SIGNAL” cheat. Also, because the video quality has gotten quickly and drastically better, more and more horror films – in particular, horror shorts – are being shot on smartphones. Augmented Reality (AR) horror games superimpose horrific imagery over the live video your smartphone’s camera is capturing. But where smartphones are really making a mark is in the subject matter of the films themselves. Is it really healthy to be connected at all times? To be tethered to work concerns and home concerns without pause? To check for texts or social media updates dozens or even hundreds of times a day?

Which brings us to video chats, deployed to great effect in the mega-popular horror short Skypemare a few years back. (Yes, we know its Skype conversation was on a laptop rather than a smartphone, but the concept is the same.) And in today’s featured short, Where Is It, two friends converse via FaceTime – and things do not go well. It’s a cool exercise in filmmaking boundaries, since the entire story is told through a single, unbroken FaceTime session.

Where Is It is co-directed by Todd Spence and Zak White, and stars Whitney Gries, Travina Springer, and Patrick Keane. Next you break a mirror, make sure it isn’t coveted by… something. RUNTIME: 3:29


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Image from horror short Where Is It (2017)
DAY 2 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Sweet Tooth’ (2015)

DAY 2 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Sweet Tooth’ (2015)

Image from Sweet Tooth (2015) horror short
Image from Sweet Tooth (2015) horror short

31 days. 31 films.

WHAT’S ON THE MENU FOR ‘SWEET TOOTH’: Black humor suffuses this candy-colored take on a celebration gone horribly awry. Here’s the official synopsis:

When little Norman attends Duncan’s 11th birthday, he participates in a seemingly innocent game of Hit the Piñata.. But when his bat rips clear though the piñata and connects with the face of the spoiled birthday boy, he is surprised to find that candy, not blood, is spilling from the boy’s open wound. Much to the dismay of the unsuspecting party guests, this new discovery fills Norman with delight, for he is very, very hungry.

Michael Muchnij directed, co-wrote, and even created the score for this short, which clocks in just under five minutes. Enjoy the sugar rush.


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DAY 1 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Selfie From Hell’ (2015)

DAY 1 | 2017 GH Oct. Short Horror Film Fest: ‘Selfie From Hell’ (2015)

Image from Selfie from Hell (2015) horror short
Image from Selfie from Hell (2015) horror short

31 days. 31 films.

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: A brilliant addition to the growing family of smartphone-centric horror shorts, Selfie From Hell takes a simple premise and spins it into a highly effective horror short. In less than two minutes, it pulls the viewer into a baffling mystery with a violent outcome, paying off with one of the best jump scares in horror short history.

Erdal Ceylan wrote and directed this short, and Meelah Adams stars. Since being posted on YouTube in August 2015, Selfie from Hell has racked up more than 20 millions views and an impressive number of festival awards. In a twist paralleling Swedish director David F. Sandberg‘s viral success with 2013’s brilliant short Lights Out, Ceylan is currently finishing up post-production on a feature-length film based on the original short, with Adams returning as one of its stars. It’s slated for release sometime next year, and the inaugural trailer may be viewed below.


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High-concept indie thriller ‘Safe Place’ (2018) seeks crowdfunding

High-concept indie thriller ‘Safe Place’ (2018) seeks crowdfunding

TAGLINE FOR SAFE PLACE: “One person’s haven is another person’s Hell.”

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Safe Place brings together a team with a proven track record (producer Johnny Macabre is the man behind cult fave Be My Cat: A Film for Anne) and a cast featuring two genre veterans: Ashley Mary Nunes (Scary Larry, All Through the House) and the legendary (and always busy) Bill Oberst Jr. (Scream Queens, Take This Lollipop, and many, many more). And the premise sounds especially fertile:

Lori and her friends have their whole lives ahead of them. Or so they think: When art student Lori Hughes sells a piece at her first show, it seems to be the beginning of a promising career. Better still, the purchaser, Chris Craven, is a wealthy eccentric who invites Lori and her friends back to his rustic lodge for a night of celebration and planning for the future. Unbeknownst to the friends, Chris’ homey façade hides an inner torment-a rage against the world following a senseless tragedy that forever altered him. As the evening wears on and memories of the past begin to consume him, Chris resolves to spare Lori and her friends the same suffering that he’s endured in his life-by ending theirs.

Safe Place is currently in pre-production. According to director/co-writer Nick Hunt (this is his feature film debut), the plan is to secure funding and begin filming in the fall of 2017. Eventual release is slated for sometime in 2018.


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