By Matt Schantz (@Schantzman87)
“Hello? Who’s there?”, she asks into the dark void.
As she runs from the attacker, she trips and stumbles, eventually landing on her back just in time to see the blade plunge into her chest.
Are you as sick of these slasher clichés as I am? Have you ever thought to yourself, “What the hell was that?!? I could do better!” Well writer, director, producer, and actor Jim Rothman, had the same idea — so he set out to make a cliché free horror movie. Which, realistically, has seemed to be an impossible task lately.
“SCYTHE”, is a psychological thriller and slasher short film, that follows two teenage girls dealing with the news of an escaped serial killer. In less than 15 minutes, Jim Rothman did the impossible — he made a horror film which avoided most of the textbook horror film clichés. (Is a news story about an escaped notorious serial killer considered cliché?) I found myself intrigued with the story, the characters and the pacing.
The pacing, albeit a very short film, was outstanding. The blend of fast paced shaky cam and long slow dolly shots with a sprinkle of tight close-ups build suspense like no feature film I’ve seen in a very long time. The score was perfect creating tension within a scene without taking you out of the moment. The director’s choice of building suspenseful close up shots leading to nothing, instead of a dreaded jump-scare, was a welcome change of pace.
One of my favorite movies of all time is John Carpenter’s “Halloween”. “SCYTHE” oozes the same paranoid, “you can’t escape your own nightmare” feel the classic “Halloween” did.
Now here’s the awesome thing; WE CAN GET THIS GREAT SHORT MADE INTO A FEATURE FILM!!! Rothman currently has a Kickstarter campaign in full swing to help raise the remaining $50,000 of their $100,000 budget.
Not only do they have a well made short film under their belt to help entice possible investors, but they have been testing the indie scene by showing “SCYTHE” at film festivals. The film debuted at the 2015 Los Angeles International Short Film Festival and played at the Cleveland International Film Festival on April 8th.
I am excited to see this film grow. MAJOR kudos go out to Jim Rothman, the cast, and the crew of “SCYTHE” for creating a short film that has rekindled my love for the horror genre.
You can watch “SCYTHE” at the top of this page via Vimeo and support the Kickstarter campaign here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/413608676/scythe-a-realistic-slasher-film.