NecronomiCon Providence 2015 Review: INNSMOUTH Is Short But Shocking

Editor, Europe; Rotterdam, The Netherlands (@ardvark23)
NecronomiCon Providence 2015 Review: INNSMOUTH Is Short But Shocking
This year, it's 125 years ago that H. P. Lovecraft was born, and though the writer died in 1937, his influence and popularity have not diminished one bit over the last few decades. Literally suffering from a Fantastic Fear of Everything, Lovecraft had a unique talent for putting his constant unease on paper. While accusations of racism and misogyny are not unfounded, the sad truth is probably that he really was always afraid. And to this day, his writings manage to tickle a creepy-bone in the back of your head.

Therefore, 2015 sees several events celebrating Lovecraft's special anniversary, and one of them was held last week in his hometown of Providence. And one of the short films playing there was Izzy Lee's Innsmouth. Izzy's been busy: after Postpartum and A Favor (reviewed yesterday) this is her third short being released this summer. Time for a review!

INNSMOUTH-review-ext1.jpgWhen a corpse is found with strange bite-marks, the police come across a picture of the victim, standing next to a mysterious woman. Further clues point to the small village of Innsmouth, and a detective decides to try and find the woman in the picture.

Innsmouth is only eleven minutes long, meaning ten without credits, so saying anything more about the story would be spoiling things. But those who have read Lovecraft's The Shadow Over Innsmouth should not be surprised that things turn out to be quite fishy (hurhur) in the village. As it was initially meant to be part of a Lovecraft-inspired anthology (which unfortunately fell through), rest assured Innsmouth is definitely preaching to his choir.

Diana Porter and Tristan Risk play the detective and the mystery woman circling each other, and both are obviously having fun with the material, daring to go a bit further than most will expect. As does director Izzy Lee, by the way. With less than a quarter of the running time of an X-files episode, she has to rush things along a bit. Her short cannot depend on a long, slow build-up, so instead we get thrown in, with loud, foreboding music announcing doom. And... well, basically, if this were a creature-feature, Lee suddenly skips to the end. Innsmouth takes a turn into unexpected exploitation territory, leading to an impressively shocking reveal. Indeed a Reveal with a capital R, as in: I anticipated SOME-thing, but not THAT.

The story's logic may be a bit shaky, but then again, that is true of most nightmares. Like a good fair-ground attraction Innsmouth is short yet manages to bring the thrills. Fans of Lovecraft, and especially fans of cinematic interpretations of his work, should definitely be interested in this short.

They might get a bit shocked though. Surely, H. P. Lovecraft would have been...

Innsmouth will be doing its rounds at festivals and other Lovecraftian meetings. For instance, it will be shown at the Lovecraft 125 Year Cosmic Horror event in Gouda, the Netherlands, this coming Friday.

And a disclaimer: Izzy Lee is indeed Michelle "Izzy" Galgana, who also writes for ScreenAnarchy. She was not involved in any way with the content or editing of this article.
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