Sohome Horror Film Festival Pride Edition – Short Film Reviews

sohome-fest-shorts

As part of the special Sohome Horror Film Festival: Pride Edition, organisers treated viewers to a series of short films all with a mix of LGBT themes and, at times, crazy and crazy visuals.

Here is our roundup of the highlights –

The Pain Within Us

After losing her wife in a deadly car accident, Ray finds herself haunted by a soaking wet figure in the same home that she once shared with her partner. Ray soon questions if she is being haunted by more than just the guilt of losing the love of her life.

This raw and unrelenting look at grief is beautifully shot and really speaks to those struggling about how reaching out for help and be the first step towards healing.

Unusual Attachment

When Hunter thinks he’s found…and lost…the love of his life on a sketchy video chat site, he scours the net to reunite with his missed connection…only to find something far worse in the process.

This inventive short from Michael Varrati was filmed entirely during the lockdown and offers wit and does some stunning world-building during its short run time. The highlight of the festival for its ingenuity and razor-sharp script.

Conversion Therapist

A pansexual, polyamorous trio kidnap a bigoted conversion therapist and torture him until he sees the light.

Loaded with social commentary, Bears Rebecca Fonte’s brutal look at revenge from a victim perspective is raw and untethered but also strikes a fine balance to have question to protagonists action whilst also agreeing with them on some level. Hard-hitting stuff.

Innocent Boy

On an unforgiving, dust-swept highway, a group of rag-tag hustlers, led by a loathsome Madam, preys on the desperados who have come for sex, drugs and Momma’s special milk. A young black trans boy in the throws of withdrawing, desperate for love and affection, is relentlessly bullied by his brother in trade, but things change when a ruthless Cowboy rides into town. As the boys begin to fall one-by-one, Penny is caught between Cowboy’s murderous rage and the greed and corruption that Momma represents.

Although a bit of a style over substance exercise, Innocent Boy should be applauded for its mix of diverse characters and a unique storyline you may not see anywhere else.

Labrys 

In a clandestine meeting between two young, queer people; they navigate the occasionally awkward boundaries of the first date after meeting online. But some people don’t take kindly to their presence.

This unique take on dating is an exploration of ‘otherness’ with a mix of the supernatural. Labrys takes chances and feels all the better for it; a refreshing and unique love story with strong themes wrapped up in its 7 minutes run time.

Jeremiah

An Asian-American high school football player confronts his deepest fears after an encounter with a mysterious figure.

Jeremiah is an exploration of fighting off your demons and giving in to your hidden desires.

I Am Monsters

Nicholas Vince has become renowned for his role in the Hellraiser series as the iconic Chatterer but viewers were treated to a tease of his one-man show I am Monsters. With a mix of stories of working with icons such as Clive Barker to navigating the AIDS crisis and politicians looking to ‘fix’ gay people, this promises to be funny, heartfelt and at times a tough watch.

Thirst Trap 

Hooking up sure can be thirsty work…

Starting just before Charlie Steeds’ After Dark this vampire short explores the world of our favourites fanged villains in 2020.

Whereas BBC’s Dracula failed to translate into the modern-day these vamps are primed and ready, using dating apps to lure victims whilst also pining after long lost love.

Although the finale was quite abrupt, this was a fun and quirky little adventure.

Tea Parties are for Babies

What if instead of Wonderland, Alice fell down a rabbit hole of drug-fueled clubbing and booze-fuelled make outs? The mad tea party would sure end up curious…

Another short with a vampiric edge, Tea Parties are for Babies has a sly and sexual edge which makes it a fun watch.

A Halloween Trick

When an oversexed party boy finds himself at odds with his quiet neighbour in the days leading up to Halloween, he discovers that their miscommunication may have deadly consequences when he accidentally invites the wrong man home for the night.

A second offering from Michael Varrati, A Halloween Trick shows us another side of Halloween as a neighbour conflict turns deadly. Once again it is witty and wears its influences on its sleeve with a delicious conclusion that ensured a round of applause from this reviewer.

Demons

Matt is just looking for love and acceptance in a messed up world, the problem is he’s both gay and a serial killer, and in this messed up world only one of those do you need to be in the closet about.

The blackest of black comedies, Demons takes the serial killer motif and spins it on its head, giving us a heartfelt and hilarious short with enough blood to keep any gorehound happy.

Death Drop Gorgeous 

A dejected bartender and an ageing drag queen try to survive the eccentric and hostile nightlife of a corrupt city, as a masked maniac slaughters young gay men and drains them of blood.

Audiences were also given a special preview clip of new dragsploitation slasher Death Drop Gorgeous which had anyone with penis cringing by the finale.

 

A big thank you to festival directors Mitch Harrod and Charlie Steeds for organising such a fantastic variety of films to enjoy virtually.

 

 

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