02nd Dec2014

‘Revelations’ Review (Short Film)

by Nicky Johnson

Stars: Sheri Davis, Gracie Whitten, Lance Eakright, Kristal White, Jason White | Written and Directed by Roger Sampson

revelations-cast

Summarising a short film that’s runs just shy of 13 minutes is always tricky, but it doesn’t help when over a quarter of that time is taken up by a surprising amount of credits in a tacky cursive font. To keep a short story shorter though, Mary (Sheri Davis) recently became the adoptive mother of Lili (Gracie Whitten), who seems to enjoy drawing monsters with pointed bloody teeth. Over a phone call with Mary’s boss, we find out that her husband is in Saudi Arabia, only when Lili asks for ice cream, we find that not only is he not in Saudi Arabia, he’s dead and chopped into pieces so he can fit in the freezer.

Surprisingly enough, I didn’t hate it and kind of want to see more. The acting was low budget, the script was lower budget (seriously, a first-year college student could have written it) and next to nothing was original. However, I kind of liked where the story was going, and if they gave it longer to develop maybe it could’ve been more entertaining. Instead, there was 2 turning points that made go ‘WTF?!?’ and ask a heck of a lot of questions which made me want more.

More could’ve been made if it weren’t for this bizarre insistence on having over 3 and a half minutes of credits. It seems a strange thing to be nitpicky about I know, but because there were so many it ended up being one of the main things I remember and it genuinely impacted my viewing experience because it was just. So. Slow. It was also a wasted opportunity to add any extra points of context to the story: the opening credits started with a stock back and white old timey movie effect which suddenly changes to colour, looking around the house and ending on a family picture, and the end starts with the family picture adjusted to show daddy dead in the most tacky way (people put more effort into trick or treating that this picture) and an slow list in 20 pt font.

To summarise-bad script, boring acting, endless credits, and yet still could be a lot worse. I’d be more willing to recommend a half hour version with more story/detail and some actual action, but then they’d probably ruin it with 8 minutes worth of credits detailing the exact specifications of all the equipment used, right down the exact make up brush.

** 2/5

[Editors Note: Revelations is the first film in a five-part short-film anthology called The Forces of Horror, all from writer/director Roger Sampson. Sampson’s goal is to produce five shorts, each starring the same cast but each featuring stories from different horror sub-genres]

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