We Review A Classic 1980s Horror Movie That Comes To Us From ‘The Void’ in 2017
It’s very rare these days to find a horror movie that uses practical effects exclusively for their monsters. The Void is the latest exception to that rule, which is exactly why I found this film so enjoyable. My favorite horror film of all time is John Carpenter’s The Thing. The obvious homages to that film from directors Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski push all the right buttons for me as a horror fan. This movie is a lot of fun.
It all starts when police officer Carter, played by Aaron Poole discovers an injured man stumbling along the road. Carter quickly takes him to a hospital for treatment where his estranged wife Allison is a nurse. Things start to get really weird after this. First, the building is surrounded by cult members wearing white robes with a black triangle on their face. Next, people inside the hospital start transforming into, who knows what, it’s actually quite hard to describe. You kind of just have to see it. From this point, Carter tries to protect every person he can in a fight for survival.
The film kind of feels like a mix between Event Horizon and The Thing. The feeling of helpless isolation plays on throughout the film. You don’t want to go anywhere alone in this hospital.
Classic Feel, Modern Movie
What I appreciate the most about this film is it manages to be scary without resorting to jump scares. Jump scares are something most modern day horror films over exploit to achieve scariness these days. They don’t make your film a horror, they make it a startler. The Void feels like a classic horror film that would fit in perfectly in the 1980s and that’s probably the point. It builds the tension with creepiness, great creature effects, and that previously mentioned feeling of isolation. There are a lot of moments of claustrophobia throughout the film.
This movie never let me know where it would take me next. Which is another reason why I enjoy it so much. It feels so original despite a lot the obvious references to classics. By the end of the film, I didn’t know what the hell was going on. The only things that matter, I was enjoying the ride and I was scared for what might happen next. That is exactly what you look for in a horror film.
However, my biggest criticism of the film sort of lies with that feeling of cluelessness. While I love the practical creature effects, at the same time the monsters felt like they were just designed to have awesome looking practical effects. There doesn’t seem to be any explanation as to why they look the way they do. The film doesn’t try to explain and I don’t think they could. I honestly think they just wanted sweet looking practical effects. Personally, I can forgive them for that because the film was so enjoyable.
This Isn’t The End…
This a low budget film with no big-name actors. This movie came to us thanks to a successful Indiegogo campaign. The filmmakers were able to gather over $80,000 from donations from the campaign. They use all that money efficiently and wisely. The performances are great from the small timers. My favorite character is probably ‘the son’ played by Mik Byskov. Even if he doesn’t speak a single word throughout the whole film, his physical performance says enough.
The Void is a must see film for horror fans, new and old. With amazing practical effects, great performances from the small-time cast, and a uniquely original story with a few homages to classics, this film should find a way into any horror enthusiasts library. The film is currently getting screenings in a few select theaters but you can also download the film on demand from nearly any online rental streaming service. Check out their website for ways to watch this film. I highly recommend you see this film.
For ways to watch this film click here.
Supchucks’ Official Grade: B+
When police officer Carter (Aaron Poole) discovers a blood-soaked man limping down a deserted road, he rushes him to a local hospital with a barebones, night shift staff. As cloaked, cult-like figures surround the building, the patients and staff inside start to turn ravenously insane. Trying to protect the survivors, Carter leads them into the depths of the hospital where they discover a gateway to immense evil.
Cast: Aaron Poole, Kathleen Munroe, Kenneth Welsh, Daniel Fathers, Ellen Wong, Mik Byskov, Evan Stern, and Grace Munro.
Director(s): Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski
Writer(s): Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski
Runtime: 90 minutes
Studio: Screen Media Films