SHORT FILM REVIEW: TAPE (2012)
A friend of mine, also a fellow film buff and writer for various websites and publications, recently made a short film and asked me to watch it and maybe write a review of it. I told him I would be delighted to. I love watching friends’ of mine switch spots from sitting on the couch and watching other peoples’ art and projects to getting behind the camera and creating some art of their own. Well, in some cases it is art and in other cases it is pieces of total crap. In fact, my friend Jason Coffman told me just prior to sending me the link to his film that “if you hate it, feel free to be brutal”. As much as I like to trash a worthless movie that has plagued society and its film buffs by even being created, TAPE was not a piece of crap. In fact, I found it to be pretty entertaining, well-shot, and decent acting.
The plot of TAPE revolves around Jim Carsten’s (Aaron Christensen) wife, Sarah (Michelle Courvais) leaving him. Carsten enlists the help of a mysterious Mr. Lake to get some revenge on his wife Sarah for leaving him. Mr. Lake wears a black mask made out of some clothing material, maybe a pantyhose of some sort, and dons a grey suit, leather gloves, and speaks via an old-school tape recorder by playing tapes already pre-recorded (or so it seems!). Aaron Christensen, better known as Dr. AC to his fellow horror comrades and film fanatics for his extensive knowledge regarding horror films (he even has a book published that he edited and contributed reviews to entitled Horror-101) but many also know him as a talented theater performer in stage plays and working with Wild Claw Theatre in Chicago.
Christensen carries this short film from finish to ending, as there really is only one other character with any lines of dialogue (I can’t really count the mysterious Mr. Lake as delivering any real lines of dialogue because his voice seems to have been filtered much like any nefarious villain of his sort) and her role is only brief.
With a running time of only 13:26, the film is very brief. For fans of gore, there may be only a tiny segment of the film that may satiate your lust for blood, but the scene is brief and by no means gory. There is some blood in the film, though. The greatest achievement in TAPE is the editing, shot selection, and the sound production. Since the film was shot digitally, I sort of was expecting some porn to pop onto the screen since the digital shots reminded me of the countless amounts of modern-age porn films and websites that shoot everything in digital camera now.
If anyone would like to see TAPE, it will be premiering on the big screen at the Portage Theater at TERROR IN THE AISLES 11 on July 13th, 2012 in Chicago (along with NIGHTBREED: THE CABAL CUT, HELLRAISER, and CANDYMAN).
Jason Coffman directed, edited, wrote, and produced this film. The film stars Aaron Christensen (DEAD WEIGHT), Michelle Courvais (THE LANDLORD), Amanda Heise and Jason Coffman. The Makeup and effects were done by Coye Vega. Editing and sound design were done by Andrew Horton and Jason Coffman. The short film was shot on a Canon EOS Rebel T2i 550D, Flip Video 2G, and iPhone 4. It was shot in Chicago, Illinois and Crawfordsville, Indiana.
Check out the TAPE trailer: