Archive for the Uncategorized Category

Short Film Review: Visitor (2017)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on February 9, 2017 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Force of Nature Films presents Visitor, an unnerving short film centered on a woman who receives mysterious text messages from a stranger. Visitor incorporates a simple premise and leaves the viewer wanting to know more. It’s key to bear in mind that Visitor is a concept piece geared toward becoming a feature film and already there is plenty of interesting material in place.

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Directed and written by Roger Sampson, Visitor is essentially body horror on a small budget but it doesn’t reveal a great deal. All that is presented about the lead character (played by Ashley Maure) is that she is a fertility doctor but there seems to be a whole lot more to her past that remains unexplored. The link between pregnancy and possession goes hand in hand thematically relating to the fear of physical invasion.

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Phone stalking is a frequent convention when it comes to horror but with modern technology continuing to grow and more and more people living through their devices it paves the way for a whole new kind of scary as an easier form of personal access. The combination of body invasion and the growth of technology makes for an unsettling experience. There’s a short amount of tension in place before events become extra sinister. The ending of the piece is disturbingly well-crafted and knows how to strike a nerve with it’s audience.

Visitor is well done and has a plenty of potential to develop it’s narrative further as well as include some creative and gory FX.

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews 

A Floresta das Almas Perdidas (The Forest of Lost Souls) (2017) Review

Posted in Uncategorized on January 11, 2017 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Short film director Jose Pedro Lopes (Survivalismo, 2011) has produced his first feature length film, the dark and disturbing, A Floresta das Almas Perdidas (The Forest of Lost Souls).

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The titular forest is Portugal’s most infamous suicide spot. One morning two complete strangers with their own demons to bear meet within the wood. Ricardo (Jorge Mota) has planned to end his life but is interrupted by the arrival of Carolina (Daniela Love) who shares similar motivations. Ricardo attempts to make sense as to why a young woman with her whole life ahead of her has a desire for a premature death while Carolina is hostile towards him. She soon gets under his skin in analyzing his situation. Events head into a tense and sinister direction that proves unpredictable and absolutely compelling.

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A Floresta das Almas Perdidas is shot entirely in black and white and while it comes across as cinematically stylish it also complements the melancholic tone of the film. It contains striking cinematography, and each frame is polished and beautifully composed. The cinematography makes the most of the beauty of the location. Overall it’s a very visual film, mostly telling the story through imagery with little dialogue. However, the dialogue spoken proves powerful and effective.

Daniela Love delivers a stand out performance as a complex young woman with extremely dark thoughts on her mind. Carolina is a chilling character and her actions throughout the film are fascinatingly disturbing.

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Plot-wise, A Floresta das Almas Perdidas is surprising and heads down an unexpected route from the film that first begins. It tackles a hard hitting subject matter artistically making it somewhat different and experimental.

The film incorporates a beautiful and haunting score which adds to the already chilling atmosphere as well as brilliantly fitting soundtrack.

With a relatively compact run time of 71 minutes, A Floresta das Almas Perdidas achieves a great deal in its narrative and visual storytelling. It’s a film that offers up complex and riveting characterization that drives the story. The violence is tastefully portrayed however it’s a film that packs an emotional and psychological impact.

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A Floresta das Almas Perdidas is a filmmaking achievement for Lopes, taking on a very real and emotionally difficult subject matter and creating something truly inventive. The film is an intriguing entry in the horror/mystery genre.

A Floresta das Almas Perdidas receives its world premiere in February 2017 at the Fantasporto Film Festival.

 http://www.fantasporto.com/

Watch the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJeL_vi9EQ8

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews

Happy New Year from Hayley’s Horror Reviews

Posted in Ghostface Girls, Love Horror, Uncategorized with tags on January 1, 2017 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Wishing all my fang-tastic followers a Bloody, Gory but Happy New Year. Thank you to you all for your continued support with this blog and my work with Love Horror and Ghostface Girls. 

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Head over to my Facebook page for plenty more updates and my new feature, “Scary Soundtrack” where once a week I will post a piece of music from some of my favourite horror movies.

https://www.facebook.com/HayleysHorrorReviews/

Let’s make 2017 the scariest year yet as I enter my sixth year of horror reviewing!

Celluloid Screams 2016: We Go On Review

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2016 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Death is always a difficult subject matter, something the human mind struggles to comprehend. This is the case for the troubled and extremely phobic Miles (Clark Freeman) in We Go On; a film that boldly questions the universe’s ultimate unknown mystery, is there life after death?

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Ever since experiencing a tragic loss during childhood, Miles is tormented by not knowing what comes after his mortal existence so much so that his obsession leads him into taking out an ad offering $30,000 for anyone who can prove that an afterlife does in fact exist. Of course the situation lures in a number of cranks ready to deceive Miles for a stake at the extortionate amount of money, but the tables take a sinister turn when he receives an ominous voicemail. Along with his over-protective mother Charlotte (Annette O’Toole), they set out on a journey of emotional and chilling proportions leading to a discovery that they both could have never imagined.

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We Go On is expertly crafted bringing an equal amount of gut punching emotional drama alongside unnerving horror. It keeps the audience on the edge of their seats throughout as it ventures into unpredictable directions, raising questions about the uncertainty of mortality and death. At its core it’s a very human story. The lead character is complexly constructed as instead of living in the moment, his whole life is determined by whether there is a greater purpose beyond his current state of being. Annette O’Toole and Clark Freeman play the dynamics between mother and son as believable with layered performances, it’s a great balance having her character as the skeptic and him as having faith. One of the central standout performances however goes to Jay Dunn as Nelson, an ambiguous character that plays a big role in the chain of events on Miles’s journey. Hands down, Dunn provides the creepiest performance of 2016 so far.

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The film also reunites O’Toole with her Smallville co-star John Glover. Glover plays Dr. Ellison, a character that displays intent to aid Miles’s quest for answers leading to tension and conflict with Ellison and Charlotte’s mistrust of him.

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Directors Jesse Holland and Andy Mitton take on a challenging concept and portray it effectively. With it’s melancholic and enigmatic tone that is aided by the bleak cinematography, We Go On is a strong film from the supernatural sub-genre. It’s a slow burn that keeps the audience guessing until it’s unveil which results in heart-rendering moments. We Go On is a film that easily gets under the skin and leaves us questioning whether it’s better not knowing if there’s really something after death.

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews

 

 

Recent Love Horror Reviews

Posted in Love Horror, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 29, 2016 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Presenting the latest reviews I’ve written for the Horror Movie site, LoveHorror.co.uk.

I return to my roots with The Passing (AKA. Yr Ymadawiad), a brooding, psychological piece of Welsh grimness shot near my home town of Aberystwyth. Be sure to check out the creators popular bilingual crime drama Hinterland (AKA. Y Gwyll) which can be binged on Netflix.

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http://lovehorror.co.uk/horror-reviews/passing-yr-ymadawiad-2015-review/

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Secondly I took on Some Kind of Hate, released as part of the Frightfest Presents distribution label.

http://lovehorror.co.uk/horror-reviews/kind-hate-review/

Keep on scary-ing!

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.

 

High-Rise Review On Love Horror.

Posted in Love Horror, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 22, 2016 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Review of Ben Wheatley’s adaptation of J G Ballard’s High-Rise, screened at Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff  10th March 2016.

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http://lovehorror.co.uk/thriller/high-rise-2015-review/

Hayley Alice Roberts 

Hayley’s Horror Reviews. 

Pandora: A Short Film Review (2016)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on January 26, 2016 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

With horror in 2016 being rather underwhelming so far its always refreshing to see what the indie scene has to offer. Short films are just as much a prominent part of the horror genre as the features, particularly for fans who enjoy attending festivals where there’s a wide range of them to view. Incorporating a limited time frame and smaller budgets, filmmakers are provided with an opportunity to produce effective scares and make the best out of the resources they have.

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Pandora is a supernatural short film from Scottish director Drew Mewse and available to view on youtube. Shot on a 6D DSLR camera Mewse’s cinematography is sharp and of a professional standard. The whole production is polished and impressive work for such a small crew in which Mewse takes the reigns as writer, director, cinematographer, producer and editor along with a cast of five actors accompanied by a haunting score provided by co-writer and also executive producer Ali Campbell.

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The tone is solemn and bleak which is complimented by the dark lighting and eeriness captured by its location of the traditional, gothic house. Pandora weaves in themes of jealousy and paranoia during it’s twelve minute run time. Susie (Susan Leiper) discovers incriminating photographs of her boyfriend Andy (Andy Noble) pictured with a mysterious woman (Erin Sykes). Andy shockingly claims that he isn’t in the photos at all questioning Susie’s mental state with the added dimension of something paranormal at play. Susie is shown opening the box signifying the idea of discovering something that could shatter her relationship in the long-term. Pandora capitalizes on a sense of real horror, the idea of finding out something negatively life changing, acting as a threat towards familiar ideals and values. Pandora is clearly influenced by Japanese supernatural horror, building up a slow burning sense of dread without relying on loud noises or cheap jump scares in order to garner a reaction. Pandora has an intrigue surrounding it which has potential for broader storytelling within a feature format.

A strong offering from Mewse with universal fears and concepts at the centre. Pandora is also an example of what can be achieved with accessible technology nowadays.

Watch Pandora below:

 

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.