CURVE signals the arrival of a new master of horror
Currently making the rounds at international festivals and gaining plaudits wherever it plays, is Tim Egan’s debut film CURVE. A short of Australian origin that is carried by strong word of mouth, the tightly edited nightmare is sure to leave its mark on English audiences this Sunday as Egan’s stylish chiller will see its European premiere at London’s FrightFest.
CURVE unfolds over a lean yet blisteringly tense 10 minutes as viewers are introduced to a nameless protagonist who clings to a smooth surface that curves downward into an abyss – a pitch-black pit from which ominous sounds emanate. Is there any way for her to climb upward, back to safety? Or is she doomed from the get-go?
Shrewdly utilizing its lack of context to engage our imagination and draw the audience’s empathy for Laura Jane Turner’s seemingly hopeless plight (a strong calling card for the actress!), our overall sense of involvement ensures the terror is felt tenfold. Bolstered by the stifling, close-up cinematography of contorted limbs that desperately try to clasp onto life, Egan wastes not a single, merciless shot. A crisp and unsettling sound design further erase any separation between us and the action on screen, leaving us poised over the pit, breathlessly close to Turner’s character.
Without doubt CURVE is this year’s strongest testament to the combined potency of ‘show, don’t tell’ and ‘less is more’; as inspired as it restrained, this is an elegantly simplistic nail biter that wrings horror from minimalism and a harrowing idea that outfits loss of control with the sting of random cruelty.
To horror fans worldwide: pray to catch this edge-of-your-seat nightmare at a film festival near you as it must be experienced on a big screen. Fair word of warning though, CURVE will make you squirm and is not for the faint of heart. But then what are nerves for, if not for wracking?
Check out CURVE whenever you can, and await Egan’s next cut with bated breath.