Mikel Ledesma’s horror short “Bedevil” is a furious and emotional breakdown of obsession. The film takes on an ultra-indie, grittiness as verite scenes capture an intense dichotomy between what we think we know, and and what we fear about those we hold closest to us. “Bedevil” follows a young man facing the depth of horror as a stalker torments him. The film stars Michael Beckhart, Mikel Ledesma, Madeleine Garcia and Triston Pullen.
“Bedevil” isn’t a new story, stalking has gone from the hidden, shadowy depths of society to permeate the subgenres of horror cinema. Mostly shock/exploitation/torture-porn nightmares that have females victims by cruel intentions. Then later as role reversal hit the story arcs we entered into a new domain of hell that many around the world deal with outside of fictional situations. It is a macabre phenom that also plagues the LGBT community as well, and until recently most of the films held a more playful view of the story of stalkers. Mikel Ledesma has not done so with “Bedevil”.
Ledesma takes a more brutal, raw, emotional look into stalkerama. “Bedevil” is rich with dark, surreal atmosphere that reminds me of 70’s low budget films like “Honeymoon Killers” and “Criminally Insane”. In the short 12 minute cut I screened, Ledesma gave me fast, relatable, earthy horror that felt relentless as the story unfolds. The special effects are rife with blood, abuse, and psychotica. The cast do falter somewhat in delivering the dialog but only in a few scenes which quickly get forced out of your mine from the high intensity and overal emotionality of “Bedevil”. For the most part every think clicks on a simple, deliciously monstrous level of horror. I found myself really imagining just how nightmarish this short film would be given the feature film treatment that “Bedevil” begs for.