A man stalks the streets at night. A very dangerous man who has little regard for anybody but himself. He is searching for people that he will use in a game. A game that satisfies the sick twisted mind of not only himself, but also of others that are willing to take part. However, games have winners and losers and outcomes are not preordained, no matter how stacked the decks are.
Nightis a thriller/horror film written and directed by Nicholas Micheal Jacobs. Night is an interesting study into the mind of a deranged man. This man is Adam Audrey, acted by Nicholas Micheal Jacobs. Nicholas does a great job convincing us that Adam is a dangerous person with sociopathic tendencies. His victim is Judy Stern, played by Gianna Jacobs. Gianna also does a fine job. She shows us that, while extremely terrified, she is also very defiant and never gives up the will to live.
The setting and mood of this film are standouts and it shows. Night uses a mix of found footage and traditional camera work and the footage was well crafted and inventive. In a sea of unimpressive found footage films, Nightis not one of them. The plot and realistic nature of the movie make for a very dark and sinister atmosphere. Fans of good thriller/horror films will appreciate that this mood doesn’t ever let up.
A few of the criticisms I have with Night are in its editing. To improve their effectiveness, many scenes could have been shortened. An example would be the opening scene of the movie in which Adam is getting ready to leave. I went through a variety of emotions during this part. At first I was curious wondering what this Adam was up to. I was then creeped out, realizing he was getting ready to do something nefarious. But finally, and unfortunately, I started to feel a bit bored as the shot lingered for to long.
Night is a film that is equal parts frightening and disturbing. The overall story is simple and some of the scenes linger for little to long, but the acting and craftsmanship is solid. This movie is meant to scare and terrify and through an inventive camera style and deft handling of mood and atmosphere, it triumphs.
A serial killer lives by a very specific set of rules. When these rules are broken, mistakes are made. It is these mistakes that lead to the eventual capture of the perpetrator. However, one particular serial killer (Mike Neider) believes he has perfected what he thinks of as an art. His solution to the problem is simple. Follow the rules and never, under any circumstances, break them. But can you ever really trust the mind of a killer?
Rules To Kill is a short horror film, written and directed by Joshua Hartwell of EVOX Media. Due to the documentarian style, as well as the mannerisms and personality of the main character, Rules To Kill is an extremely cold and calculating movie. As a lover of the thriller/horror genre, and true crime in general, I enjoyed this film a lot.
It excelled in three areas. First, the script is outstanding. It puts you into the thought processes of a person that thinks they are in control, when in reality things are spiraling into madness. There’s also enough nuance in the writing that makes you invested to come back for multiple viewings. Secondly, I enjoyed the diverse soundtrack. It had a mix of songs that set the dire mood for the piece while also providing brief moments of levity. These moments were needed in a film with such strong feelings of dread. Lastly, the cinematography in the film was impressive. The tracking shots of the killer in action were creepy and visceral while the quiet shots of the landscape were quiet and serene. The quiet shots helped in providing time to process the dialogue of the killer and the chaos of his actions.
While I enjoyed this film I would be remiss without mentioning that this experience is not for everyone. It’s for a specific group of people. People who enjoy exploring the minds of people that commit crimes and the thought processes behind their actions. This film is extremely visceral.
Rules To Kill is an interesting look into the psychology of a serial killer. It’s a bit formulaic but through great writing, cinematography, and a killer soundtrack it provides a well crafted film. If you’re into true crime and horror/thrillers I suggest looking up Rules To Kill on YouTube and giving this a shot.
In case you don’t know Izaiah Hernandez, allow me to introduce him to you!
Izaiah helped CinemaSlice to document/shoot the SUNSHINE DAYDREAM 2018 festival, and plans on doing it again this year! Izaiah has always been self-motivated, eager to collaborate, and easy to work with! And his great work speaks for itself!
Fav. Film(s): 1. Sherlock Holmes- It’s my #1, because I love deduction & reasoning that comes with the territory of a detective. Crime and mystery has always been a favorite of mine and I also love the slow-mo fight scenes that are incorporated by using a ghost camera
2. Saving Private Ryan- The movie the sparked my love for History and showing how deep the roots go for the brotherhood that is our military. D-Day is the most prolific event, IMO, in world history that forever changed the course of the 2nd great war. I have an ultimate appreciation for the sacrifices made by so many young men and this movie helped re- imagine the horror that is war.
3. Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)- The horror movie that started it all. Robert Englund is my favorite horror movie actor that went on to do many installments with the series. But seeing Freddy for the first when I was 7, left an imprint in my mind to this day of what most horror movies today only hope to achieve.
My history with film: From a very young age, I have witnessed my father take pride in how he was able to capture priceless family moments with photography and he inspired me the most. At my old elementary school, I was given the chance to be a camera operator for our weekly ‘News Cast” held on Fridays. It went on for the whole year and forever sparked my love for technology as a whole. I then continued on to middle school where they did the same thing with a weekly show or news cast where i was both a CO and a host. Fast forward a bit and I began to pursue a degree in Communication Arts at Adrian College where I did obtain a Bachelor’s. My skill set and interests have widened to primarily be the guy “behind the scenes”. I love photography the most, because of what you can capture in any given moment that others may not see, which is great because it just shows how I view the world. Which is through my art. After college, I had the chance to become a wedding videographer for a small business in Michigan Center and have dabbled with freelance and personal projects since then. In 2018, I was then recruited by Nic White of CinemaSlice, to be the videographer of the 1st Annual Sunshine Film & Arts Fest, which is by the far the best experience that I have had with video and I only hope to do this for years to come. As for this years festival, I can’t wait to bring my love for video to the event and evolve my skills to bring a wholesome experience for others to see.
Future goals: I am currently investing in myself to be a streamer and content creator. I love the freedom of using my own ideas without bars and showing off how my mind works. I would love to someday work for a major Network like Comedy Central or even be part of a crew for the next Netflix movie. I am a huge gaming nerd and I want to combine my world and figure out a way to “shake” the streaming industry that is YouTube & Twitch. So many possibilities and it’s impossible to choose a single route for myself, but I will go wherever life takes me.
My top 3 inspirations to date as I mentioned before was in fact my father, mainly for his love of photography. As for a couple more that follow: 1. My Dad 2. Dr. Disrespect- The Doc is a Twitch phenomena and a great top competitor in the online gaming community. His personality or pseudonym is exactly how it sounds…disrespectful. His motto is Violence. Speed. Momentum. And in his own words, the combination of those 3 bring domination. Whenever he goes live, he puts on a show that no one can rival…yet. I recommend to all to look him up on YouTube, if you want to get an idea of what he is like. 3. Logic- World renowned Hip-Hop artist that went beyond my expectations for music. I have listened to everything this man has ever put out and he is a fantastic lyricist, producer, singer, and just overall icon. His music is my drive to achieve something greater and his music was a big part of life going through college.
You always have a place with the ‘Slice, Izaiah! Thank you for all that you do!
What in the actual hell!? James Gunn is making a wicked super hero film, and I think I’ve fallen in love…
I want to be careful not to over-hype this film for myself too much… but what can I say? It’s the first film I’ve been really excited about in a LONG TIME!
Marvel fan-boys know James Gunn for his world on the insanely successful Hollywood blockbuster, Gaurdians of the Galaxy. Although these Marvel Cinematic Universe contributions are hilarious space-fueled romps and great popcorn movies, to me, James Gunn is held in high regard because of his earlier work. From his work with TROMA in the 90’s, to SLITHER in 2000’s, to THE BELKO EXPERIMENT in 2010’s — I’ve been a fan of his work before I ever realized it was the same filmmaker putting these schlocky, gorey, amazing cinematic experiences together for my twisted amusement!
Sidebar, Tomeo & Juliet (1996) both scarred me and opened my eyes to truly independent cinema as a 13-year old (wanna be) filmmaker. If you have never watched this film, go to TROMA NOW and stream this Tromasterpiece!
The official BRIGHTBURN website describes the film’s synopsis as follows:
What if a child from another world crash-landed on Earth, but instead of becoming a hero to mankind, he proved to be something far more sinister? With Brightburn, the visionary filmmaker of Guardians of the Galaxy and Slither presents a startling, subversive take on a radical new genre: superhero horror.
The fact that a writter who’s seen so much big-budget success can return to their roots and dabble in horror stories (as never before expressed on screen), is amazing! It reminds me of other filmmakers who have started in horror, and went on to make huge block-buster films (Sam Raimi, Peter Jackson, etc).
I’ll be a at the theatre on opening night for this one… do the same!
CinemaSlice is transforming The Curve in Bay City, MI into a mini theater to showcase the independent film, BLOOD ON THE LENS!
We’re using the SUDS & CINEMA moniker to advance the idea to include a special screening of a CinemaSlice film, BLOOD ON THE LENS! It’s the same great formula: Beer, indy film, and good times! BUT, we’re showing a short film and a behind the scenes featurette!
We’re back with Mini-Reviews for the 2nd half of official selections for the SUDS & CINEMA – Grove City event that occurred on March 9th, 2019!
directed by AnthonyChambers
A house sitter(LolitaPrice) arrives at her job for the night. It looks easy enough. Watch an old house and profit. That’s until she meets the odd old man(ClayDePew) in the house. Then there are the strange occurrences that are becoming increasingly unexplainable.
A very well-directed horror short that makes the creepiness of the house the star. I love old haunted house flicks and this captures the feeling of those classics in multiple ways. The camera shots give the viewer a feeling that they are in an unsettling and unfamiliar place. The actors did a great job of putting us in the shoes of the house sitter, while also making us feel uneasy about the creepy homeowner. This film probably wouldn’t do anything for people who don’t enjoy a ghostly horror vibe, but this will impress the diehard fans.
4 out of 6 Reels
directed by TomDallas
Another suspenseful action packed bank heist thriller filled with dangerous criminals and gritty police officers. Or is it…
A really fun and creative movie that explores different ways to approach a clichéd genre. The cast is large for a short film and, despite it being crowded, they all do a good job. The true star of the movie is the concept of the film. I don’t want to spoil anything but this movie really opens up after a few scenes and the rollercoaster ride begins. Some may find this short a bit to reliant on the concept but, regardless, I had a fantastic time watching every second.
5 out of 6 Reels
directed by AugustAguilar
The Subject(TylerMcKee) wakes up. The Subject entertains himself. The Subject eats. The Subject gets out of line. The Subject gets punished and put back to bed. Rise. Repeat.
A sci-fi horror short, Subject plays out similar to an episode of The Twilight Zone. Just like that classic series this film lives or dies on its story. Thankfully, the story is very good. It gives you just enough, bit by bit, to leave you wanting more until you arrive at the shocking conclusion. The plot hooked me during the entire runtime. The special effects are great and the sound design, with the ominous alarm, was quite effective. Despite some plot holes, which comes with the territory in this genre, I was still captivated.
5 out of 6 Reels
directed by ZebulonGriffin
Bear(Josh Strehle) really loves his new chair. It’s red, probably an antique, and just so dang comfy. However, his girlfriend, Susan(Tifani Ahren Davis), is not a fan of the chair. How far will Bear go for his one true love?
Wow, this was a delight to watch. The acting was superb, the story quirky, and the writing was super sharp and witty. Right from the beginning it’s made clear who Bear is and what his motivations are. I was instantly on board till the end. I didn’t connect with Bear on a personal level, but the writing was so good that I still couldn’t wait to see what he was going to do next. It hooked me from the first minute and I was smiling till the end.
6 out of 6 Reels
directed by DiaaBahaaElDein
A man is getting ready to see his daughter when suddenly, a drug addict attacks him in his apartment. However, this drug addict seems very similar to his victim in more ways than one.
A moving and emotional piece that explores addiction and the choices made that effect an addicts day-to-day activities. In many ways the short plays out similar to a horror film with the scenes being visceral and disturbing. A strong and silent performance along with great direction and camerawork make this a very powerful piece. The subject may hit hard for some viewers but the message is still important.
5 out of 6 Reels
directed by Naim David
Another normal night for your friendly neighborhood pizza delivery guy(Mickey Phelan). Well it was normal until he makes a delivery to a girl(Celeste Blandon), her face spattered in blood.
A horror short that will constantly shock you as a pizza delivery guys shift becomes more absurd by the moment. The performances are great and the script is well written. Everything up to a point was done well, but then things started to derail for me. Without spoilers all I can is that shit gets real crazy. This film is definitely entertaining, but for me the motivations of the characters seemed messy by the end. If you enjoy crazy imaginative plots this film is for you.
4 out of 6 Reels
Well, Slicers, THAT’S THAT! We hope you enjoyed our review of all of the official selections of the first ever SUDS & CINEMA – Grove City! SLICE THE PLANET!
Following CinemaSlice’s first ever Suds & Cinema event in Grove City, OH, we just had to write up mini reviews for each official selection that screened! Without further ado, let’s get into these REEL REVIEWS!
directed by NaimDavid
A woman(Mary K. Riestenberg) begins to clean up after the gruesome murder of another woman(CelesteBlandon). She quickly finds that there are more important things to worry about than her blood soaked hands.
A very effective horror short in terms of setting and characters. In the short runtime it is well established that something terrifying has happened. The actors do a tremendous job with their movements and mannerisms to help flesh out this feeling of dread. I could have used a more in terms of plot but I understand that this was probably a purposeful choice.
4 out of 6 Reels
directed by MatthewMCREllisonII
The psychedelic trip of a clown whose drink of choice is Corn 4 Gold.
An animated short done in a very unique and creative style. As a piece of art this is a captivating look into a mad alternate universe where everything pulses with a fast and frenetic energy. Looking at it as a film, I would say it’s lacking in plot with no real narrative thread to speak of.
3 out of 6 Reels
directed by AlexCaperton
A girl(RachelHass) is having a fun and relaxing night eating junk food and playing video games. Fun and relaxing until she hears a sound coming from outside her bedroom window.
This horror short has a nice advancement of creeping dread from beginning to end. I enjoyed the use of video gaming in the film. As a video gamer I use the hobby as a relaxer and can imagine how the girl may have felt before the creepy events begin. Personally, the ending left me on a bit of a cliffhanger and I would have liked to have seen more. A very effective thriller nonetheless.
4 out of 6 Reels
directed by MichaelDeSanto
Amanda(KenziePhillips) and Ryan(CharlesWetzelJr.) have just purchased a new home. Hilarity ensues when they find that the house is very lonely and would like some special favors done in return.
Enjoyable horror comedy that has fun characters and writing that is consistently funny. The writing is effective in that each character is specifically written for. This makes the characters distinctive and they don’t share the same jokes and personalities. I also have to mention the special effects, which were stellar for a low-budget film. My only minor criticism is that the story, while still very funny, was a bit disjointed and felt like we were just moving from scene to scene without much substance. Still a very funny and crowd pleasing film.
5 out of 6 Reels
directed by ChristianBlackthorne
Sometimes breaking off a relationship can lead to some very dire consequences.
This very short horror clip definitely succeeded in setting a very dark and grim tone right from the start. A very unsettling visual accompanied by a gritty atmosphere made for a nightmarish combo. It seemed to play more like a trailer, however, and I was left wanting more. It would be very interesting to see this idea expanded upon in the future to give the viewer more to sink their teeth into.
3 out of 6 Reels
directed by EricMishne
Connie(Rachel Luther) and Parker(Colin Luther) are traveling the United States with dreams of traveling the world. Their plans hit a snag when their car breaks down on a lonely stretch of road. They are not concerned until a stranger(Chris Johnson) in a pickup truck pulls up behind them.
This short was awesome. I thoroughly enjoyed the plot, the characters and especially the film’s conclusion. The plot is straightforward, putting us in a believable scenario that many enjoy doing, traveling the world. It then establishes characters that we can see ourselves as and puts them in a scenario that we all hate, our car breaking down. It wraps up brilliantly with an ending that I won’t give away, but I will say to go back and give this a second watch. Little details will emerge that go unnoticed on the first viewing and the experience will become that much more enjoyable.
6 out of 6 Reels
That’s it for PART1!!! Tune in next time for the mini reel review of the remaining films featured at SUDS & CINEMA – Grove City!
Korppainen(TapioKauma) is a pretty quirky person. With hobbies that include random shadow boxing, science fiction literature, and chess matches against himself it’s hard not to consider Korppainen unique. However, the cause of Korppainens new problem maybe his odd behavior. Nearby, a doctor named Niklas(HeikkiKauma) is on the verge of unleashing a very dark and powerful entity. An entity that requires a unique individual, just like Korppainen, to arrive on earth. When Korppainens brother, Karsta(TapioKauma), asks him to take part in a strange medical experiment, we soon find out how destructive this entity is.
Laakekoe(Medicated) is a sci-fi action adventure directed by TapioKauma and VilleViasanen. For me Laakekoe(Medicated) excelled in a few key areas: awesome special effects and telling a compelling, well paced story. The effects in this movie are extremely well done. The supernatural beings that inhabit the film are dark and ominous. You feel a real sense of danger when Korppainen is going up against them. I have to give VilleViasanen an applause for a job well done.
Laakekoe(Medicated)s pacing also kept me engaged all throughout the film. Every scene kept the action moving and I feel that’s important for a movie in this genre. It also helped that each character was distinctive and entertaining. Due to the fast pace of the film it was very important to have impressive character development to avoid any further confusion in the storyline.
This leads me to my one criticism of Laakekoe(Medicated). The story was, for me, fairly confusing. During my first viewing I always felt a bit lost. The awesome characters and action packed pace kept me watching. A second viewing definitely helped to clarify a lot of the plot details that had me lost.
The whole film project took 7 years to complete. Majority of the effort was done by two guys: Tapio Kauma and Ville Väisänen. They had previously done several short movies together but this is the first feature length movie by them. They have not officially studied move making but have instead learned everything they know about film making by trial and error. And of course by watching lots of movies. The duo have estimated that during the years they spend about 1 300 hours to complete the movie. The movie was done while the film makers studied and/or worked full time. The whole budget for the movie is less than 150 euros.
Laakekoe(Medicated) is a solid sci-fi action adventure. It has a great mix of special effects and interesting, distinctive characters. Also, it has the perfect amount of absurdity sprinkled throughout. Although you may have to give this a second watch to help understand some of the story details, Laakekoe(Medicated) is still a kick ass experience. Look it up on YouTube and give it a watch.
CinemaSlice is thrilled to announce the official award winners from the first ever SUDS & CINEMA event!
Fist and foremost, THANK YOU to everyone who submitted a film! I feel that we were extremely lucky to have received film submissions by so many talented filmmakers! In fact, if we could, we would have shown some additional films that we just didn’t have time to show a
Nearly as important, THANK YOU to everyone who attended this FREE event! As a filmmaker, and creator of art, I truly appreciate how important it is for other people to see your work– and I respect the experience of watching a short film that you’re involved with creating, along with a room full of strangers, and receiving the live feedback-loop that is an audience’s response! There’s no rush quite like it.
CinemaSlice also owes a huge THANK YOU to the Festival host and Festival Jury members who helped pull everything together! Without your hard-work we would not have been able to put together such an awesome festival!
Finally, THANK YOU to HOP YARD 62 for allowing us to showcase these quality short films inside of your establishment.
Without further ado, here are your festival winners:
AWARD WINNING FILMS
If BEST ACTOR AWARD – JOSH STREHLE (THE CHAIR)
BEST ACTRESS AWARD – RACHEL HAAS (FEAR, ITSELF)
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY AWARD – JOSHUA HOWEY (NOT FROM AROUND HERE)
BEST DIRECTOR AWARD – TOM DALLIS (STRIKE IT)
VIEWERS CHOICE AWARD – NOT FROM AROUND HERE
If you weren’t able to make it out to the event, head over to FESTIVAULT to stream all short films from this event FOR FREE!!!
Stay tuned to CinemaSlice.com/Suds for more SUDS & Cinema events around the corner!