Audrey E., here….
Step aside, Los Angeles. Austin is quickly becoming the new city of stars. From SXSW to the Austin City Limits, and just this past month, the annual Fantastic Fest (the nation’s most diverse film festival), the city is bursting with art! This year there was a plethora of strange and unusual films waiting to make their mark, and I’m here to tell you about two that might be short in length, but tall with impact!
First up, we have ‘Creswick,’ an Australian horror entry from Director Natalie James. The movie innocently begins with Sam (Dana Miltins) helping her father, Colin (Chris Orchard), pack away the belongings of their family estate. But as Sam comes across reminders of her childhood and hears her father speak of unexplained occurrences and the real reason for his decision to move, her prickling suspicions begin to rise. Flashbacks of ominous dreams she had dismissed as nonsensical slowly invade her consciousness, and when she wakes up to an unsettling sound in the night, her fear is soon justified.
This film has a gradual and smooth restrain. The dim lighting, hypnotic camerawork and isolated setting complement a deep feeling of nyctophobia. With only two actors to concentrate on, casting is key, and this duo played to the strengths of these well-crafted roles. And while most horror movies have forgotten the effectiveness of a slow burn, this one was a refreshing throwback to a classic tactic of subtlety. In the span of only ten minutes, ‘Creswick’ successfully builds up anxiety, gains sympathy for its characters and has one of the creepiest reveals since the 2013 short ‘Lights Out!’