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The Independent Critic

Kim Sønderholm, Siff Andersson, Slavko Lavobic, Julie Kunz, Michael Larsen, Introduction by Lloyd Kaufman
Martin Sonntag, Kim Sønderholm
Bastian Brinch Pedersen, Martin Sonntag, Kim Sønderholm


 "Harvest" is a Demented and Fun Short From Denmark 
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With an intro served up  by none other than Troma legend Lloyd Kaufman, you should have no doubt whatsoever what to expect from Harvest, a nearly 20-minute short film from Denmark that recently picked up the prize for Best Special Effects during the Movie Battle event at CPH PIX. The film stars Kim Sønderholm, who also co-wrote and co-directed the film, as John, who at first sight seems not too far removed from Human Centipede's Dr. Heiter. It's never really certain if John actually is a doctor, but it's absolutely certain that he takes a certain joy out of dismembering the bodies of those whom he encounters and harvesting their organs for a wealthy client named Zarko (Slavko Labovic).

Unfortunately for John, something goes wrong when he harvests the kidney of a victim with a particularly rare blood type and his unforgiving client gives him 16 hours to rectify the situation before he himself, who just so happens to be that same blood type, will have to fork over his own kidney in payment. Desperate for an option, John signs up on an alternative dating website and quickly encounters Nadja (Siff Andersson), who is more than a little alternative herself and who is surprisingly quick in her willingness to follow John home.

Of course, nothing goes quite as expected.

Co-directors Kim Sønderholm and Martin Sonntag, who also wrote the script with Bastian Brinch Pedersen, have crafted a hugely entertaining film with enough gore to please gorehounds and enough humor to make you guiltily laugh your way through the film. While I can't quite call the film one of the more original ideas around, Sønderholm and Sonntag pull it off with an abundance of style and American Psycho styled irreverence. Both Sønderholm and co-star Andersson give dementedly awesome performances, but they also play it understatedly enough that the film's occasional twists are particularly effective.

The film's production quality is top notch throughout, with special effects far superior than what one usually expects in an indie short film. Harvest already has several other festival appearances lined up in Europe and there's little doubt that the film will have a long life on the indie/underground and horror fest circuits. If you get a chance, you'll definitely want to check it out.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic