Short Film Review: PAINT THE TOWN RED (2017)

You know that one friend we all have? The one that wants you to go to a club or bar that you know you’d never willingly step foot in if it was your own choice? That friend that has an idea and even though your mind is telling you no, your body is telling you yes? Josephine (Ariel Hansen) is probably that friend to Andie (Allison Klause) and I’m certain that Andie wishes she hadn’t listened to her body.

Josephine has tickets to a hot new exclusive joint and of course she wants to bring along her lovely friend Andie. The two are dolled-up and ready to… paint the town red. They arrive at a happenin’ place where the crowd is enjoying some synthy-goth music and the first drinks are on the house. What more could a couple of fun-loving gals ask for?

The tone is set right from the start when the doorman gives the ladies a good sniff as they enter the club. Are we thinking “what a creep” or “wow, that’s kinda creepy”? Is he admiring their Love’s Baby Soft or their parfum de humain? Either way these two are in for a night they’ll never forget. Most likely because they won’t live to remember it.

PAINT THE TOWN RED is written and directed by Bad Cookie Pictures Canadian duo Ariel Hanson and Christopher Andrew Graham. We go in not knowing exactly what’s happening, though an ominous feeling is surrounding the friends. The club is sufficiently dark and the music – a stand-out for me – is certainly sinister enough. There’s some kink and a bit of gore, perfectly satisfactory for the film’s brief 5 minute running time.

This short film doesn’t delve deeply into uncharted territory. The script isn’t overly innovative but it does leave you questioning what actually happened. It’s well-paced, well-acted and delivers on what makes a film a “horror” film. I’d be interested in seeing what Bad Cookie Pictures could do with a higher budget and longer running time.

We’ve all had one of those nights where we wish we’d stayed home and Netflixed and chilled instead of heading out among the herded masses. We all have a friend like Josephine that drags us along with them on their bad acid trip. The main difference is that we usually wake up the next morning.

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