Sunday, October 30, 2022

gored and mildred.

As this years 31 Days of Horror lurches toward it's climax here's a (fairly) new film all about 'the interweb streaming' in the hope of getting the cool kids to follow me.*

Excuse the brevity of the review but the film is quite short (and I don't want to give too much away) plus it's Sunday and I'm recovering from a Halloween party.



Deadstream (2022).

Dir: Joseph Winter, Vanessa Winter.

Cast: Joseph Winter, Melanie Stone.



Ginger bearded 'influencer' Shawn Ruddy (writer, director, producer, teaboy Winter) is a formally beloved YouTube star who, 6 months previously,was cancelled by the masses for performing an online stunt deemed 'triggering' (no idea what he did at this point but it probably involved putting Ms. instead of Mx. on a letter, pretty sure that's punishable by death these days) and is now trying to win back his viewers - and more importantly his sponsors and therefore his income - by spending the night in America's most haunted house (dubbed 'Death Manor') and livestreaming the entire event.

To make sure he follows thru' with the whole thing he sabotages his car and puts a tiny stone in his shoe so he can't run away before locking himself in the building and throwing the keys away.

He's nothing if not dedicated.

Or very stupid.

Or actual really aware of how found footage films work.

Either way I'm up for it.

Beard of Evil.


Setting up a selection of cool mini-cams as he lovingly explains the horrible history of the house - which it seems is haunted by the ghost of the daughter of a wealthy Mormon family, the failed poet and eternal spinster Mildred Pratt.

Unlucky in the worlds of publishing and love (she committed suicide after her fiance's unexpected death) she's said to haunt the house, killing any new occupants in order to build herself the family she was cruelly denied in life.

And on that note he retires to the bedroom base where he can monitor any happenings (of a ghostly kind, not 60s drug fueled ones). 

Welcome to fright night.


Here come the Belgians!

Checking the wardrobe for ghosts/talking lions Shawn discovers a strange symbol hanging there and, on the suggestion of his viewers tears it up before holding a (small, one man) séance in the hope of contacting Mildred.

Or even Elon Musk so he can ask him for his blue tick back. 

As Shawn ominously asks "Is anyone there?" his viewers start messaging him with reports of ghostly apparition sighting throughout the house as ever louder bangs are heard approaching Shawn's location.

Visibly shitting himself our hairy hero pops his head round the door to investigate, coming face to face with manic fangirl Chrissy (the brilliant Stone - currently being utterly fruit loops in VHS/99) who using her powers of detection and Google maps, has turned up to meet her hero and 'help' with the investigation.

Sounds legit.

Seeing as she's

A. Really hot


B. Really knowledgeable about the house and the supernatural in general

(But mainly because she's super hot)

Shawn agrees to let her stay and help so it's not too long (well it's a short movie) before the pair are settled down in the downstairs bedroom reciting  - at Chrissy's suggestion - a spell that will enable Shawn to safely contact the dead.

Within minutes of the ritual being completed the paranormal activity (and the amount of pound shop masks on show) in the house goes off the scale and Shawn begins to realise that there may be more to the house's reputation than meets the eye....

Meanwhile the viewers are bombarding Shawn's feed not only with ghost sightings but with information regarding the symbol from earlier and the true meaning of the ritual he's just performed....

...and one viewer has discovered that there may be more to Chrissy than meets the eye....

I'm sorry but I still would.

From first-time filmmakers Joseph and Vanessa Winter comes a genuinely funny (and at times actually - jump - scary) modern take on the whole roller-coaster horror genre perfected by Sam Raimi with Evil Dead 2 but with a modern spin thanks to its on the nose commentary re: social media and the current obsession with fame over consequence.

Cheap as chips and running at a perfect 87 minutes the film exists just to give the audience a fun-filled screamfest and is all the better for it - a noisy, laugh inducing frightmare that's perfect with friends and a pint.**

I for one look forward to what the dynamic Winter duo do next.


*Or more likely get me cancelled.



**If you have friends that is.

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