Saturday, May 19, 2012

My Review Of “The Collective Vol. III: 10 Minutes To Live”

     Jabb Pictures third Volume in the Collective series is quite a gem. It offers something unique and far too under appreciated in the horror genre field. The perspective of female imagination, talent, and fervor to the directors chair. This collection of short films gives us the woman’s point of view in raw, emotional scenes both compelling and provocative. All ten of these shorts were created and directed by female filmmakers, a collection unlike any other out there.

     “Conclusion” explores the last ten minutes of life by taking us to an alternate reality where a company provides sterile and orderly ways to die. Under medication each person is shuffled into stark rooms and given a method of death to be exacted by their own hand. It is a crisp and fresh nightmare world that harkens back to the days of “Outer Limits” and “Night Gallery”. An emotionally charged horror story where death is only as painful as our own regrets.
     “Home Security” is a wicked funny short film that flips the script on home invasion. My multi-racialness did come out with this one though. “Why did the black guy have to be the burglar?” Still it was a great little short. Of coarse the gay in me wished the criminal would have been the hot guy who came for his partner who was the homeowner’s best-y.
     Perverts and Peeping Tom’s, it’s scary to think about what might live next door. The third installment is called “Suffer Well” and peers into that notion with morbid curiosity. This short flowed between film noir and cinema verite that made me think back to movies like “Night Stalker”. Yet this tale mixed in a bit of the vengeful spirit element giving an artistic and sentimental point of view. The coolest aspect here is the ball’s out embrace of nudity and gratuitous sex that was shot both tastefully and raw.
     “He Who Watches” is a gothic tale of death. The final moments of life and how the mind responds to the explosion of emotion fuels this piece. This is a classic nightmare of how a person being taken over by disease deals with finality and regrets. The ending is a devilish treat.
     “Pact” has a sweet yet tragic flow as the music plays and we follow a single guy into the woods as he makes his way to his own ending. A straight up suicide short that sends chills down your back as the black&white scenes tug at your emotions. One of the best short films on Vol. III. So poignant for these times today.
     “Stay” explores the issue of domestic violence with raw intensity. It is a wicked story that shows karma really is a bitch. I say “let the motherfucker die as well”.
     “Snapped”, what to say? Wow! Show us how you really feel about cheating. This is a full throttled angst revenge piece. The story is dark and focused. An in your face response to the anger from a woman scorned. It is fresh and entertaining to watch this play out. Now what does that say about me!?
     “The Key” borders on the romantic. A truly gothic tale of ominous destiny and the paranormal. There is a slight hint to an action element not fully explored yet perfectly held back teasing a plot of evil forces bent on destruction. It is a perfect blend of two styles melding in a phantasmal flirtation. It makes me want more! A clever story indeed.
     “Jog” is a classic film noir shot from the point of view of the jogger. The story keeps you disoriented with a limited view that works beautifully. It creates a natural build of suspense. Finding the carnage as the joggers sees the environment along the route is a delightful twist that is vintage gamer vision. You never see the death happen but anyone can tell by the bodies the jogger passes just before the panic sets in that it isn’t a pleasant death. By far the best short on Vol. III.
     The last short “Palindromist” is a strange visual play that follows a dying woman around the city. I assume to her favorite haunts. There is no dialogue at all which normally can work in a short film. This time however I did not feel the connection. Still the cinematography was beautiful and the representation of emotional fore longing was evident as this was the woman’s last moments of life. I feel sad that I did not share the remorse the way I normally do with this extremely artistic short. Still this one is kind of an avant-garde.
     There is so much bitter sweet darkness in this emotionally driven third collection of short films that it would be hard to find fault in “The Collective Vol. III: 10 Minutes To Live”. There are some shorts that affect the viewer more than others but all are great insight in to a greatly under acknowledged section of the horror genre. The female point of view is often left behind like the carnage of body parts lying on cutting room floor with all the scream queens. It is great to see how women see horror not as just woman but as great story tellers equal to their male counterparts.

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