Mile High Horror Film Festival 2021: Film Previews

Mile High Horror Film Festival is on its way, October 7th through the 13th! The virtual event is showcasing some feature film gems and horror short masterpieces from across the world! We're going to take a glimpse into our most anticipated films and shorts for the upcoming festival. To see all the festival has to offer, click here. To get tickets, follow this link. Let's see where MHHFF will be taking us this year!


Feature Film Previews

The feature films from this year cross a broad spectrum of cultures, styles, and themes, providing a satisfying experience for a wide array of genre fans. This year also features Guest Feature Film Judge, Dan Myrick, co-writer/director of The Blair Witch Project. I'm very curious to find out his thoughts on one of the feature films we'll discuss below, Two Witches...


Sweetie, You Won't Believe It

A few friends step away from their lives to go fishing, but end up witnessing a murder, and violent hijinks and chaos ensue.

Efrit and I are big fans of horror-comedies and this trailer looks like Sweetie could be a hilariously violent ride in the vein of Tucker and Dale vs. Evil. With some satire and over-the-top gore effects evident throughout the trailer, there is a presence of clever self-awareness that boasts the potential of being the hit of the festival.


Two Witches

This film follows two stories involving malevolent witches with evil intentions.

While it sounds like a two-segment anthology themed around witches, I suspect it is an interwoven tale that will carry some strong substance and meaningful symbolism, all the while delivering some top-notch terror and tension. The trailer teases a pure horror film that may bring the fear back into classic witch mythos that isn't often felt in modern cinema. You can see the trailer over at MHHFF.


Brain Freeze

A group of survivors attempt to escape a gated community overrun with zombies born of mutation from a mysterious fertilizer.

The plot and movie poster (which you can see here) imply horror-comedy, but many of the screenshots I have seen for this movie feel alarmingly serious and macabre. Perhaps it will be a good blend of both in the vein of Boys From County Hell, which ended up having far more somber and sobering moments than one might have thought from the trailer. The plant/fertilizer-based zombie outbreak has potential for some intriguing takes on infection, mutation, and most importantly creative execution on practical effects. This could end up being an entertaining and engaging take on the zombie genre.


Short Films

Horror shorts hold a special place in our hearts, as is the case for many horror fans. They offer side-splitting laughs, genuinely terrifying scares, and thought-provoking critique of our cultures and reality. MHHFF's curation of shorts look to touch on all elements of what make the medium great. But don't take our word for it...Jeffrey Reddick, writer/creator of Final Destination, will be the judge for the short film category for this year's festival!


Sink

A man finds himself falling apart after a horrific attack as told entirely from above the bathroom sink.

There is nothing wrong with a classic, well-executed horror short. But the genre often boasts unique takes on storytelling through stylish and creative methods and perspectives. Sink appears to do just that, telling a horrific tale from a single shot just above a man's sink. I can't wait for this one.


A Darker Place

A soldier in an unknown branch of the military follows a creature into a mysterious doorway. The soldier must decide whether this dark journey is worth risking his life for.

I appreciate substance in horror. But I'm equally, and perhaps contradictorily, a man of simple tastes as well. If you put a creature in a horror short, I'm going to watch it. But on top of that, this short does seem to carry with it some substance, tackling the moral dilemma of a soldier conflicted with risking his life for a pointless endgame. Which is a message not far from reality.


Golem

Nazi-occupied Prague, 1939. A group of German soldiers search for a fugitive Rabbi in the basement of an abandoned synagogue - unaware of the horror awaiting them.

The golem mythos in Jewish folklore has long intrigued me. It has been explored in horror before, like in an episode of the X-Files and the 2018 movie The Golem. In both instances it was tackling more human elements of the mythos, whereas this short may be more involved with the "golem protecting a Jewish community" or even "revenge" aspects of the myth. Plus, there's opportunity for some practical effects. I have great interest in the execution of this short.


Minimally Invasive

An anxious patient fears his concerns are being ignored when his routine operation yields unexpected findings.

Many of us have fears associated with the hospital: going under anesthesia, the nonchalant and sometimes disconnected nature of the nurses and doctors, the fear of something going wrong or simply the fear of not knowing what's wrong. This short tackles these anxieties, possibly with a blend of macabre humor based on the style. Sometimes horror comes with a sense of catharsis and this short likely houses some for those with phobias of surgery. Or it may just push you over the edge. Who knows?


Out at Night

A down-on-his-luck drifter is offered a ride by a mysterious man, only for the two to be approached by someone, or something, in the darkness of the night.

This plot has a lot going on, but we're also talking about a 17-minute runtime, which is significant for a short. However, the teaser gives the impression of having compacted an entire movie into a short-sized length. This short just may house more than the conventional content, willing to expand a bit more on the nuance of its characters and the breadth of its tension.


Playing with Spiders

On the eve of ritual suicide, the most devout follower in a spider-worshiping cult receives a visit from a powerful demon. With dawn approaching, she must choose between this demonic spider or her abusive leader.

A spider-worshipping cult with a demon-spider-spider-demon? How could this not be awesome? While the plot sounds fun, the aspect I am most curious about is the exploration of its catch-22...If a demon-worshipping cult were to succeed...how do you choose between the evils in front of you? There's a lot to unpack and I hope to see these concepts played with throughout the short.


Wolf in Dude's Clothing

A starving wolf finds a suit of human skin, crawls inside, and becomes a man.

Sometimes a plot sounds so ridiculous that I just have to see it. So is the case with Wolf in Dude's Clothing. The title alone put a smile on my face. I am very curious to see where the concept is going to go, but I have a feeling it will be an entertaining journey.


These are just some of the feature films and shorts previewed for MHHFF. If any of these looked interesting, or you want to dive into more of what MHHFF has to offer, check out their site. Hopefully we'll see you online for this year's festival!


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