Aislinn Ni Uallachain, James Martinez, Shane Whoriskey
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
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With just a hint of the original Saw (the good one), dancing in the background, writer/director Dave Thorpe's 13-minute suspense/horror short Impetuous amps up the chills almost immediately when we meet Kerrie (Aislinn Ní Uallacháin). Kerrie was on her way to a party with friends Desmond (James Martinez) and Ross (Shane Whoriskey) when there's a sudden car accident and she awakens in a seemingly abandoned shed. Unable to move, she soon discovers that she's not alone.
Winner of the Best Horror Short at Naas Short Film Festival and nominated Best Overall Short at LIT Film Festival in addition to being a finalist for Best Short Screenplay at the 2011 Waterford Film Festival, Impetuous is a terrific example of an indie horror short that manages to create suspenseful and creepy horror without a bunch of cheap and unconvincing special effects getting in the way. Writer/Director Dave Thorpe emphasizes his characters in Impetuous, with a strong emphasis on the character of Kerrie, whose intensity of emotions and heightened fear help to drive the film against the disturbingly calmer presence of James Martinez's Desmond.
D.P. Paddy O'Connor's lensing emphasizes close-ups and an almost claustrophobic quality that makes the film's viewing experience rather jarring, but given the film's low-budget nature this is a much better choice than trying to emphasize the physical horror. Original music from Phil Bennetts also helps to drive the film's almost relentless intensity. If there's any fault with the film, it's likely the uneven performances within the characters of Kerrie and Desmond - individually, they are fine. Yet, when they're going back and forth it's hard not to be distracted by the vast chasm of emotion that exists between the calmer Desmond and the nearly histrionic Kerrie. While this is certainly somewhat explained by the way the characters develop, it would have been nice to have seen it a bit more subtle in development.
Minor quibble aside, Impetuous is an effective horror short from Ireland-based Thorpe, whose keen sense of the visual and ear for dialogue weave themselves together to create an entertaining short film.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic