Contributed by Andy Shultz
SPOILER WARNING! This review contains a synopsis of two short films. If you haven’t seen the films and wish not to read any spoilers, watch the films and then read. If you have seen them, read the review and watch them again!
Our friends over at Force Of Nature Productions (www.fonproductions.com , @fonprods ) just launched their company and website a few weeks ago and with it posted their two horror short films- Defense Mechanism and BunBun. The films have been screened at multiple film festivals to favorable reviews.
I took the opportunity to review both films. They each offer something special and different. Both reviews are listed below. Enjoy.
Defense Mechanism, is a relationship drama set during a zombie apocalypse. The story follows lovers Sam (Matt DeNoto, @outonthejoke) and Paula (Redetha Deason, @RedethaDeason) during their last few moments together.The short by writer by Matt DeNoto/Lead Actor and director Sebastian Munoz (@CiNeMaMaN8) takes place entirely in a garage. They spend their final moments together looking for something to kill Paula with after she turns. As they come to grips with their situation, they reminisce about the good times they’ve had over the last few years. Both try to avoid being sad as they crack jokes and make fun of each other. As Paula grows weaker, Sam tries to hide his sadness, attempting to spare her. Ultimately, Paula does give in to her wounds. She dies and turns. It’s in these final moments that Sam shares his true love for her, recalling the story of what he went through to get her the perfect ring. In the end, Sam doesn’t kill Paula, instead, he allows Zombie Paula to kill him.
We live in a world where Zombie movies and shows are at an all-time high. It is refreshing to see something other than a brutal fight for survival. Defense Mechanism gives a comedic and romantic look at the end of the world. They aren’t crying and trying to find a cure to save her life. They know Paula is dead. But instead, they focus on the little time they have left.
The chemistry between DeNoto and Deason is fantastic. They show real love for one another as they crack jokes, talk about brains and insult one another. Deason makes dying into a good time, even using it to as a way to flirt with Sam. DeNoto breaks your heart as he holds a dead Paula, remembering the past and his love for her. His final moments before he’s taken out are brilliant.
My only gripe with the film is the editing and sound. There are a few moments where the editing is a little rough and shots seem to jump too much. There is also a slight static sound or weird vibration in the background through out the film. It’s noticeable when there is no dialogue or music.
Overall, it’s a great horror short and a lot of fun to watch. It does the zombie genre justice and is definitely worth viewing. I highly recommend it!
Defense Mechanism won “Best in Show” at the 2015 Pensacon.
BunBun, Written and Directed by Sebastian Munoz, is a child’s nightmare come true. As Willy and Jelly (Played by Munoz’s children William and Angelica Munoz), prepare for bed, Jelly confesses her fear of a monster under the bed. Willy calms his sister’s worries by telling her he’s made a deal with the monster in the closet, BunBun. Every night, BunBun gets a cookie in exchange for protecting them. Sure enough, when the Monster (Corey Zicari) from under the bed comes out to get Jelly, BunBun (Brett Gustafson), comes to the rescue in true horror fashion and eats the monster, thus protecting the children and getting his cookie.
BunBun reminded me so much of my childhood- the irrational fear of monsters and something lurking under the bed or in the closet. To this day, I keep my feet tucked under the covers so nothing can grab me.
Both William and Angelica Munoz are adorable. They are very natural and comfortable in front of the camera. Zicari and Gustafson are creepy and scary as hell in their respective roles.
Just like Defense Mechanism, BunBun seems to have a slight issue with editing. The jumps are rough, especially with the over-the-shoulder like shots with the children. There also seems to a comic book like filter to the picture, making BubBun (The Monster) a little cartoony. However, these don’t hinder the the enjoyment of the film in any way.
It’s a twisted, dark fairy tale and should be watched. You’ll have fun, and definitely check under your bed before going to sleep. I highly recommend this one… Though you may want to keep the lights on, just in case anyone is lurking in the dark. =)
BunBun will be screening this upcoming weekend at Pensacon 2016 (February 2016).
All in all, both films are great and a joy to watch. Any horror fan or film enthusiast will enjoy them. These are both an excellent start to what is sure to be a very exciting Production Company. I cant wait to see what Force of Nature Productions has in store next!
Both Defense Mechanism and BunBun can be viewed on Force of Natures website.