Tuesday, January 31, 2012

AnythingHorror review's "FAMILIAR"

A very special thank you to Scott Shoyer at AnythingHorror.com

In FAMILIAR, which has a run time of 24 minutes, we see the daily routine of John Dodd. Let me stop right here and point something out. In Powell’s 2010 short, WORM, the main character was Geoffrey Dodd (both characters played by Robert Nolan). Coincidence? To find out I emailed executive producer Zach Green this question and he assured me that these are two separate shorts but that the main characters in both are brothers. Geoffrey and John seem to suffer from the same malaise: A negative, violent inner voice that seems to guide their very actions. Maybe this is a subtle way of Powell examining how mental illness runs in families, but there could be something else more sinister going on here. Whereas in WORM we follow Geoffrey in his daily routine at work, FAMILIAR follows John in his daily home life. We see his interactions with his wife Charlotte (Astrida Auza) and teenage daughter Jordan (Cathryn Hostick). He’s estranged from both and always keeps them at arms length, almost like he doesn’t want them to ‘know’ the real him. Read full review here.

Monday, January 30, 2012

IndyRed Review's "FAMILIAR"

Independent what? Naw. This just HAS to be HollyWood.

Now. I'm not to be easily impressed but this damn short film looks fantastic! When you say Independent versus HollyWood we all have visions of what one looks like compared to the other. And the visual style and editing of this film not only blurs that line, but almost erases it completely. It's all here. The smooth panning shots right down to the 'I can't tell where the edits are' edits. The only way to do it any justice is to watch it when you can. It looks great. What's more? The slow dread that begins to build up as you watch is done so perfectly! You may call it atmosphere but I call it damn good writing. And considering the limited settings in the film my previous statement is a bigger compliment.  The acting is superb. Something I've come to expect from Mr. Nolan. I do think that he's outdone himself this time though. The narration he gives during the movie itself is really quite amazing. The supporting cast are no slouches either. Doing a fantastic job in their roles and completely destroying the 'Cheese' factor. What the viewer sees from them is a normal family. Excellent! Read full review here.

IndyRed give's Familiar 4.5 / 5

Sunday, January 29, 2012

NerdRemix.com review's "FAMILIAR"

A very special thank you to Mr.Thomas Gelba @ NerdRemix.com

Friday, January 27, 2012

Film Bizarro review's "FAMILIAR"

Film Bizarro review's "FAMILIAR"

I can't deny it - this is the best short film I have watched in a very, very long time. It's nothing short of amazing in almost every sense. It's a visually amazing film in all it's HD glory - the cinematography is spot on and the effects are gruesome. The story is perfectly told - slowly growing from a dark psychological thriller into something we never expected, a messy body horror. Producer Zach Green said with confidence that I wouldn't be disappointed and that's proof of people knowing what they are doing. The team knows how good this film is, and that's not smugness - "Familiar" is brilliant.
Read full review here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

All Things Horror review "FAMILIAR"

Richard Powell's "FAMILIAR": The Monster Within

If you could peek into the mind of a family man, what would you expect to find? Contentment? Pride? Unconditional love? Say you were granted the ability to do just that, to peel back the layers, to experience unfiltered thought exposed at the root. Would you be scared by what you might find? It's a scary proposition if you ponder the ramifications. Polite behavior experienced on the surface might be masking some truly wicked, ugly thoughts within people you encounter on a daily basis. Some of them might be your co-workers. Others might be your friends and family. What's really going on in their heads as they sit down to a family meal? What misanthropic tendencies lie hidden behind the small talk and forced smiles? On the flipside, what if it was your own thoughts being broadcast to your neighbors? What horrible, seething presence might others find lurking in you. Read full review here.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012



As the horror film-festival circuit starts to ramp up for 2012, there’s a filmmaking team called Fatal Pictures, made up of producer/director Richard Powell and producer Zach Green, to watch out for. Their style is a mix of dark drama and fright that tends to deal with the horrors inside ourselves rather than the world around us. The duo made their first short, CONSUMPTION, in 2008, and more recently completed WORM and FAMILIAR, both starring Robert Nolan. WORM has been out a little while now, screening at events like The Sydney Underground Film Festival, Dark Bridges Film Festival,  and The Horror Society Film Festival, but expect more play around the country this year, along with FAMILIAR. Read both reviews here.

Beyond Hollywood review's FAMILIAR

Beyond Hollywood Review's "FAMILIAR"

From producer Zach Green and writer/director Richard Powell, the duo responsible for the darkly comical genre short “Worm”, comes the wickedly enjoyable short “Familiar”, a film that owes as much to the body horror of David Cronenberg as it does the outrageousness of Frank Henenlotter. It’s my favorite kind of horror flick: The movie takes an inherently silly premise and treats it very seriously. The end result is nothing sort of brilliant, and cements Fatal Pictures as one of the most daring genre outlets currently in operation. I sincerely hope that these guys put together a full-length feature in the future, as they I think they could definitely pull it off with very little effort. What these guys accomplish on a miniscule budget is nothing short of impressive. Read full review here.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Monday, January 9, 2012

WORM is an Official Selection at The Nevermore Film Festival 2012

WORM is an Official Selection at The Nevermore Film Festival 2012

Knifed in Venice review of "FAMILIAR"

Knifed in Venice review's "FAMILIAR" & Interview with
Writer/Director Richard Powell

In 2008 Richard Powell and producer Zach Green delivered their atmospheric horror Consumption which deals with the unique and difficult subject of voluntary cannibalism.  Two years later they offer up the first half of the disturbed Dodd brothers (Geoffrey) played by Robert Nolan who is a gentle and quiet high school teacher with something dark and malevolent rotting inside of him.  Familiar sees Geoffrey’s brother John (also played by Robert Nolan) as he survives a suburban existence with wife Charlotte (Auza) and daughter Jordan (Hostick) which he has come to detest.  With an increasingly forceful voice inside his head demanding he breaks free from this life he slowly comes to suspect that the voice is not his own.  It’s only after a series of traumatic events at home that John comes face to face with his conflict. Read full review here.

Getting Familiar - An Interview with Director Richard Powell

When it comes to the horror genre there's as many ditches as peaks on the cinematic landscape.  It's the marriage of supernatural and humanistic themes that create the most iconic film offerings that stand the test of time because they've been able to tap into an instinctive, evolutionary, fear that lives within us as a species.  Over the past three years Richard Powell has documented the underlying darkness that lives in the souls of man with Consumption, Worm and now Familiar and has breathed fresh life and intelligence into a genre that has become increasingly obsessed with gratuitous imagery over any actual narrative.  I've been fortunate to be able to pick the brains of the man who is making all the right moves in cinema.
Read full interview here.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

More Horror Review's "FAMILIAR"

'Familiar' (Richard Powell 2011) - Short Film Review

What can you really accomplish in 24 minutes? Really, there’s not much. You can make some breakfast, maybe, or possibly get started on some errands, but you’re not going to get much done. And you’re not going to wind up ahead when the time’s up. But if you decide to put in Richard Powell’s Familiar you’re going to accomplish one thing for sure. You’re going to get creeped the hell out.  Familiar is the latest short from Fatal Pictures written and directed by Powell. In it, we follow Robert Nolan as John Dodd as he goes about his very mundane life. We get to see inside his world via an almost melodic voice over that is warm enough to be inviting but also acerbic enough to keep us on edge. We see Dodd as he eats with his family, and watch as he expects their every move. It’s not a life all that different than any of ours, at least not until his wife gives him news that pretty much ruins his plans for a happily ever after. The news is too much for our mild mannered main attraction, and Dodd does what he feels he has to. That’s when Familiar realizes that you have it all figured out. You know where it’s going, and you get a bit complacent as the jaded viewer who’s seen it all. Read full review here.

Monday, January 2, 2012

The Blood Sprayer Review's "FAMILIAR"

The Blood Sprayer Review's FAMILIAR

The team at Fatal Pictures consisting of writer/director Richard Powell, producer Zach Green, and actor Robert Nolan came to us with a previous endeavor of theirs’ known as Worm. Worm got to me.  I was genuinely intrigued by the up and down emotional trek it took me on.  I would liken their previous film  to that of a Fugazi song with its build up, drop off, build up, etc.  Naturally, after being contacted by producer Zach Green about the next chapter in this team’s history,  it stirred up curiosity wondering what they could’ve concocted this time around.  Worm took the route of punishing the mind.  My assumption was that Familiar would take a similar route. I was half right… Read full review here.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Conduit Speaks Review's "FAMILIAR"

When FATAL PICTURES' partner/producer Zach Green informed me that he, Director Richard Powell, and actor Robert Nolan had another short film for me to take a look at, I was thrilled to pieces.  Their last endeavor:  WORM, truly fractured my psyche.  Not only was it emotionally taxing, but it also played heavily on thoughts and feelings many of us often toy with, but never act upon.  Being a family man myself, I was a bit nervous knowing that FAMILIAR's narrative existed in a world I have been fully immersed in for the better part of 10 years.  Thankfully I can say with complete honesty that I've never entertained the types of fantasies our central character laments throughout the film's run time.  However, the writer/producer/director team once again dabble quite aggressively in the recesses of a guy's mind who's pretty much "had it."  Not just had it with his own life, but with the lives of those around him. Read full review here.

The Year That Was... (2011)

Before we dive into the year that was 2011, I wanted to remind everyone of my top 10 list from 2010.  Once you've refreshed your memory with those fine films, you will find my 5 favorite short films as well as my 15 favorite feature films (of 2011).  Be sure to keep your eyes open for the next episode of THE CONDUIT SPEAKS PODCAST where I will be going into detail regarding my picks as well as discussing more films that just missed the cut.  ENJOY!!!

WORM ranks #3 on the best of (2011) shorts list
from The Conduit Speaks
Read article here.