Friday, 19 December 2014


There really are some fantastically talented people working on horror shorts right now. Quite rightly, this new wave of extremely talented filmmakers (able to do more with less money when it comes to camerawork, editing and effects due to improvements in technology) is drawing more and more attention to what used to be a sadly overlooked medium.
With the increasing numbers of short film enthusiasts out there, it is becoming easier to find the best among them due the larger amount of reliable word of mouth.
One such short that has received an extremely favourable reputation is Red Sneakers Media’s The Last Halloween.
Based on a comicbook by Mark Thibodeau and directed by the man behind another critically acclaimed short film, Remote, this was one that I knew I had to watch.
One short Facebook conversation later and I was hooked up and all set to go. 
Was the word of mouth right? Read on


Dir: Marc Roussel

Starring: Ron Basch, Emily Alatalo, Julian Richings, Angela Besharah, Brendan Heard, Drew Davis, Jake Goodman, Zoe Fraser, Kritty Uranowski, Adrian Griffiths, Alastair Forbes, Ali Adatia

SUMMARY: This is a short, so I’ll try not to spoil too much, but read on at your own risk.

The film follows four young trick or treaters — dressed as a ghost, a witch, the devil and the grim reaper — as they roam from door to door.

It doesn’t take long to realise that there is something very wrong with the people the children visit... or is it the world that they inhabit?
Canned goods, whispers of deafening booms, signposts that point out the edge of evacuation zones — this is a world that is dying, gasping its last few breaths as the children visit house after house, asking the traditional question: ‘Trick or treat?’
In time the children come to a barricaded home, one that houses a couple as haunted by the events of the past as by the mysterious world outside. The man wants the children gone, his wife wants to ensure that the trick or treaters are safe... but who is in the more dire peril here... and why?

WHY IT WORKS: Roussel has shot this short film sumptuously. It positively exudes Halloween atmosphere, with a beautifully creepy autumnal feel. It actually reminded me of Michael Dougherty's Trick 'r Treat in terms of look and ambiance. This is very much a good thing in my book.

The world created seems to fit into both the fantasy horror and post-apocalyptic sub-genres, spinning away into new and interesting directions just as you think you’re getting to grips with it. The sets feel lived in, like real and familiar places that, thankfully, cannot truly exist because of the horrific events that have so clearly ravaged them. This is a world to which the genre we love can call home.
The story is a little out there, not quite giving us all the pieces but giving us enough to form our own opinions and theories. By reading both the comic (which is free to read over at the film's official site) and watching the film I have an idea about the plot that I love and I’m sure you will all be able to do the same.
As well as Roussel's fantastic direction and a compelling story, The Last Halloween also boasts some great performances. Genre character actor Julian Richings adds some extra class with his extended cameo as a motor-mouthed maniac, while Alatalo and Basch provide some much-needed emotional weight to their characters, giving us a reason to care for their plight after a comparatively short amount of screen time. The children (Fraser, Heard, Goodman and Davis) are also all very capable — thankfully there are no monotone shouters or stage school over-anunciators here.
All in all, this is a marvellous little film. It is atmospheric, creepy and smart enough to get you to do some of the work. If, like myself, you have a ritual viewing list for each Halloween (mine is Trick 'r Treat, Halloween and the Psychoville Halloween Special) this fits in perfectly, a great appetiser for the main courses ahead. It comes highly recommended, not just for the witching season but for the months beyond as well.

SO WHERE'S IT AT? Well the lazy among you can watch it right here!

Alternatively, head over to the film’s official site for a link to watch it for free! The site also offers the aforementioned comic, more info on the film and a host of other wonderful treats (minus the tricks, thankfully!)
As well as the official web site, check out The Last Halloween’s Facebook page. You know the score by now — give these guys a big old Like for sharing their cool film with us!

10 WORD WRAP-UP: Fantasy meets the future in this spooky, atmospheric seasonal short

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Until next time, I hope you enjoyed your stay.

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