Here at ScreenAnarchy we're particularly excited about an upcoming horror anthology called The ABCs of Death, partially because some of our favorite people are working on this project, but mainly because the world can always use another rock-solid piece of anthology horror cinema. Over the next several weeks we'll be sharing our thoughts on some of the coolest horror anthologies ever made (my vote? 1972's Asylum) but right now we want to help the project move forward by promoting some of its best short submissions.
Oh yes, not only will ABCs offer 25 experienced filmmakers presenting 25 miniature horror films, but the 26th short (the one that goes with the letter T) will come from a newbie, an aspirant, a contest winner. The competition officially closed on October 1, but voting will continue through October 31. The top ten shorts, as voted by the public, will enter the final judging round, which will be decided by a vote of the other 25 filmmakers. The 26th director will be chosen on November 15.
In other words, it's time to start watching and voting for your favorites!
If you're ready to dive into the dozens of shorts on display, read on for a few minutes. My esteemed colleague Peter Martin and I have watched a huge batch of the "T submissions," and we're here to offer a few tips.
Here are some of my top picks, with direct links to pages where you can watch (and vote on) the submission:
T is for Toga
A geek and a slasher attend a college toga party. A few good chuckles here.
T is for Time (#3)
A man approaches his 40th birthday -- and a giant slob with an axe -- with much trepidation.
T is for Tracking
A "bad stepdad" tale straight out of the original Creepshow. With a lot more gore.
T is for Toss
A gang of adorable little kids have a ball as their hostess is pelted with numerous horror beginning with "T."
T is for Twig
Two pretty gals discover a connection deep in the woods. For at least a few seconds.
T is for Talk Radio
A housewife becomes infected by the bile pouring out of her kitchen radio.
Updated on 10/16:
T is for Tokophobia -- Wow. A nasty one, but it works.
T is for Twin -- Twin sisters connected by one gruesome death. (Maybe two.)
T is for Toxin (#1) -- A very clever little piece of bio-horror told via the first-person perspective. Nifty.
T is for Tantrum -- A little boy defends himself from a local murderer with rather biting results.
T is for Trash -- A homeless man finds a pretty woman in the garbage and allows her to blossom.
And here are the top six picks by my pal Peter Martin (who adds a personal note: I'm amazed at how much talent is on display, and how much quality can be packed into less than 4 minutes by filmmakers who have yet to be discovered, for the most part):
T is for Talk
Or, the first Saw without the moralizing, as six people chained against a wall must obey a LED readout commanding them to "TALK" -- but only when the sign blinks.
T is for Thread
Gruesome, clever, and very funny, in which a woman's desire to improve her looks leads to disaster.
T is for Truck
Sets a killing mood, presents the action, and then leaves you dangling. Great!
T is for Time (#1)
Lovely. Presented without dialogue, this entry from Uruguay manages to say volumes about life and death.
T is for Test
A visit to a doctor's office reveals the schism between a husband and a wife. A poison-hearted pill, with very strong filmmaking on display.
T is for Testicle
I call it "Testicular Apocalypse Now." What happens when testicles want to be free? The end of the world, my little friends. Love the imagination on display.
And now it's your turn. Go to the official website, and start watching! (Oh, and if you couldn't guess by now, most of this stuff is NSFW, so hide your children and bunnies.) As you watch, vote for the ones you really like; you can vote as often as you like. Also please use the social media tools to tell your friends about the miniature horror awesomeness.
You can start with the ones we've recommended, if you like, and then dive into the deep, wide pool of genre goodness. As a further tease / taste of death, you can watch the video below, "T is for 20 Bucks," directed by Jason Eisener + Black Magic Rollercoaster. Eisener, of course, was discovered when he made a short film for a similar competition, going on to make a feature version -- a little awesome thing called Hobo With a Shotgun. Thanks to your votes, the next Eisener could start polluting Hollywood by this time next year! Vote away!