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After becoming infamous, Rex (Ben O’Toole) ventures off to Finland, in the hopes of escaping the newfound attention. But his trip quickly turns sour when he finds himself locked up in the basement of a homicidal family. All he has is his overactive subconscious, and an unlikely ally, to give him the strength to break out, in this wacky horror-thriller-action-comedy. And it’s a bloody good time indeed.

Part of the NIGHTSTREAM Film Festival, Bloody Hell is a wildly original film from director Alister Grierson and writer Robert Benjamin. Its unique premise and writing style allows it to effortlessly genre-bend, not sticking with any tropes or predictable concepts. You’ll find that it continues to deliver unexpected “twists”, that aren’t for a gotcha! moment, but instead to reel you in even further. Constantly evolving as the story develops through different styles, and it’s fun the entire way through.

As part comedy, I really enjoyed the dry humor it has, instead of it feeling like a sketch. Believe me, there are plenty of wacky comedic moments, but I didn’t find it to go so far that it felt unbalanced. O’Toole spends a good portion of the film riffing off himself, as his subconscious mind, which is a real treat. It reminded me a little of Logan Marshall-Green’s character in the film Upgrade. Or perhaps Tyler Durden Fight Club moment of sorts, if I had to compare to anything.

It’s such a clever film that is really incomparable to anything else, in terms of its overall story and pacing. While it’s set to release in Australia, I’d love to see this flick get a US distribution sometime in the very near future. It’s why it is so important to support film festivals like NIGHTSTREAM, as it’s one of the biggest outlets for filmmakers to have their work seen and picked up for a wider release.

NIGHTSTREAM is a virtual film festival comprised of the Boston Underground Film Festival (MA), Brooklyn Horror Film Festival (NY), North Bend Film Festival (WA), the Overlook Film Festival (LA), and Popcorn Frights Film Festival (FL), showcasing a variety of genre films the weekend of Oct. 8-11. Proceeds from the festival will go to the filmmakers and artists, as well as various charities from the respective festivals towns.


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