Jack McHenry (director)
10 March 2019 (released)
10 March 2019
Probably the highlight of the weekend for me as this film pulls on the creaky B movie horrors of the 40’s and 50’s (which I enjoy very much) with a touch of parlour room Agatha Christie only for it to jack-knife to the modern day with an irreverence and archness that brings to mind The Evil Dead crossed with And Then There Were None. Jack McHenry has directed this film with a visual flair and invention that bears comparison with the former.
Shot in black and white, a supposedly sophisticated bunch of lovers, siblings and friends reunite at a crumbling old mansion for a cocktail party. The drinks flow, the quips cut, tempers flare and matters start to disintegrate pretty sharpish as things and people go bump in the night and dimensional portals open up.
There’s a lingering sense of the absurd about the whole set up and it does sometimes look as if there’s going to be some knowing sideways glance or two in to the camera. But the cast although obviously having ball keep it relatively straight.
It’s a rolling barrel for laughs from the start that combines with gore and horror as it races to the finish. Dodgy accents, period clothes and surprisingly good practical effects all combine, with an excellent soundtrack into a brilliantly composed and in to lean 73 minutes of which not a second or a pound is wasted. Could this one travel south for the summer bank holiday?