The Sunshine State is home to a bevy of filmmaking talent. Most of it goes away to Los Angeles, New York, and Georgia where tax incentives make those places meccas for producing movies. However, some brave directors, DPs, sound engineers, boom operators, and writers say “F it!” The Popcorn Frights Film Festival is a celebration of horror filmmaking from around the world. Being a Florida-born event, this year Popcorn Frights added Homegrown, a collection of horror shorts created by the talented and brave souls who stayed in the swamp to make movies.
Homegrown premiered on Saturday with a heavy-hitting
list of exciting short horror films.
A no-nonsense lesbian needs a haircut to get laid. Standing in her way is a pesky apocalypse where people spontaneous erupt into blood. A metal soundtrack and editing inspired by Edgar Wright films, plus a ferocious performance by lead Kelly Jane make Buzzcut a fun, wild ride that leaves viewers wanting more from the woman warrior with unstoppable focus.
The Midnight Service
Part of what’s designed to be an anthology series that combines fact and fiction, The Midnight Service tells a double-layered creepy story. It begins as a story about a home invasion told by the survivor. However, it ends with the disappearance of a man for all time, and no one knows why.
It Began Without Warning
Adults are terrorized by children who are under the control of a fleshy mouth thing. As the title tells ya, the film begins in the middle of the chaos without warning. A young boy is beating a man to death, then he and his friends do worse things to other adults. As this group of kids is defeated, any glimmer of hope quickly fades away.
It begins in a familiar place with a zombie-like virus spreading around, and a man loses his wife to it. However, the great thing about Pandemonium is that the all-too-familiar setting of a zombie apocalypse serves a looming part of the background to a story about a man trying to get a cure for his daughter. Slickly directed with a lot of twists packed into the short run time.
The most conceptually creative of all the Homegrown movies, Primal Screen, is part documentary, part horror film. The film tells the story of several kids, all who were affected by the trailer for a 70s film called Magic starring Anthony Hopkins. Moreover, Primal Screen focuses on the ventriloquist puppet in the movie and its haunting psychological effect. But to take the film to another level, they use these stories to make a point about our modern society. It’s subtly brilliant and shot on an all black stage with no backgrounds which create a dreamy or nightmarish void for the viewers and story to exist within.