By Bryan Christopher
March 20, 2020
There’s a lot to like about this short based on Edgar Alan Poe’s tale of a disturbed man’s dark confession. It visually translates the unnamed narrator’s descent into madness in a lot of interesting ways, it features a soundtrack as varied and manic as his mental state, and it also doesn’t hold back on the red stuff when he attacks the poor old man in his care. But by setting the story in modern day, Lindquist acknowledges something I’ve always noticed about Poe: although he’s a brilliant storyteller, my man tends to be a bit wordy. Watching the cops react to the narrator’s insistence on pontificating with Poe’s original text adds a layer of humor that I really appreciated. This one’s just a lot of fun.
Where you can find it: Making the festival rounds. Watch the trailer here.
Review can be found at: https://rue-morgue.com/short-cuts-the-short-horror-review-roundup-for-march/
By Anthony Gulfo
March 10, 2020
The Tell-Tale Heart , known in Italy as The Revealing Heart is one of Edgar Allan Poe’s most famous stories . Published for the first time more than a hundred years ago, precisely in 1843 , the Revealing Heart has not yet ceased to fascinate and disturb . Proof of this is the short film produced by BassMint Productions : The Tell-Tale Heart (2020) , directed and written by McClain Lindquist.
The story of Edgar Allan Poe tells the story of a man insane and his obsession with an older man, especially for his eye glass. It is an obsession that slowly degenerates and, finally, leads the protagonist to commit the murder of the old man. But because of his madness the killer unmasks himself: he seems to feel the old man’s heart beating, beating and beating! The noise haunts him and leads him to appear before the authorities. The story is narrated in the first person, and is immediately captivating : the narrator (protagonist) presents himself as perfectly healthy and he cannot help reiterating it as soon as he has the opportunity. In this way, the reader is pushed to distrust him and to understand the reality of the facts through his own intellectual effort.
The short film , unlike the story, does not have a linear structure . Two policemen go to the madman’s house (played by Sonny Grimsley ) and ask for explanations about the disappearance of the old man. The madman, therefore, begins to explain the story. As he does so, the spectator witnesses the development of the obsession with the old man (James C. Morris), which leads to obsession, perversion and murder. The killer tells the story in the old man’s house and in the prison: the periods of time merge , creating a confusing whirlwind of images and events that, however, allow us to understand the unfolding of the facts. The chaosit also represents the mental state of the protagonist: a man devoured by an obsession, unable to order his thoughts.
The terrible visions of the madman, getting closer to the end, are increasingly bloody . It could be said that the short in question is push even beyond the story of Poe , giving an almost exaggerated form to the words and giving a shade gore . If in the story the old man’s heart merely palpitated, in fact, in the short film we see the madman holding a real quivering heart in his hand . And there is often a great abundance of blood.
Edgar Allan Poe , in his stories, hardly ever used blood to disturb. Rather, he endeavored to create atmospheres suitable for the purpose. He managed to do this by taking advantage of elements such as darkness , the banal ticking of a clock, the weaknesses and perversions of the human mind . Poe was able to convey a ‘ primitive ‘ terror , dealing with themes that have always concerned the nature of man. The Tell-Tale Heart of McClain Lindquist manages to unsettle combining atmosphere typically poeiana, but adding the violence and blood; elements, the latter, which have little to do with the Boston writer.
Consequently, The Tell-Tale Heart (2020) presents itself as a courageous product, which is inspired by Poe, but allows itself to go even further, revisiting the story in a more modern key.
Review can be found at: https://www.horroritalia24.it/the-tell-tale-heart-2020-recensione/