The usual suspects of a town hall meeting share their unexpectedly common accounts of a civic problem worse than paid parking.
My first introduction to Jeremy Herbert’s work was the 2018 short film The Thing About Beecher’s Gate. I got to watch it early in 2019 and it honestly blew me away. I saw a good deal of short films throughout the rest of the year, but Beecher’s Gate sat safely in my top 5. The special (and practical) effects were just genius, there was awesome cinematography, and it managed to walk that fine line between fun and creepy.
When a screener for The Things with the Glowing Green Eyes (TTWTGGE) found its way into my inbox, I was more than ready for round two. Herbert seems to have a thing for excessively long and campy titles and this one seemed to be paying homage to early horror films from the 50s and 60s. I was expecting a short film akin to Invasion of the Body Snatchers or something along those lines.
…and as usual I was dead wrong…
*Minor, unavoidable spoilers beyond this point*
TTWTGGE is a social commentary disguised as a horror-comedy. Disguised is a term I use very loosely here, as it’s more like two kids in a trench coat claiming to be a horror film. This is not a negative at all though, but rather the source of the comedy. Herbert and co-writer Wolf Stahl set out to make a film about societal ills and mental health; about depression and inner demons; about the existential problems that stare us in the face that we just pretend aren’t a threat…and he wanted to make that film as accessible, watchable and comical as he could without being preachy. It works.
The film has a lot of dry, tongue-in-cheek humour that revolves around the characters reacting in unexpected, different ways to how any rational, sane character should, would or could and once you figure out that you do the exact same thing when confronted with life’s very own horrors—grief, depression, addiction—it’s all a little funnier…and a little sadder too.
Accompanying the short is a quirky, upbeat score that really fits the film perfectly. The acting is purposefully awkward for comedic intent, which is either going to sit well with you or it isn’t. It’s so dry that it’s borderline British humour. Morgan McLeod (as Bernie) also gave a stellar performance—as he did in Beecher’s Gate—and is definitely a talent I’d love to see more of.
TTWTGGE is, without a doubt, a winner. It tackles serious issues without becoming sanctimonious or self-righteous, staying playful and to the point. There is very little that comes across as creepy though, apart from the score—the creatures with the green eyes doing little themselves. It is a smart film with a purpose, but it’s not going to sate any appetites for guts and gore. As always, thanks for reading and stay sordid. Trailer and poster below.
Site founder. Horror enthusiast. Metalhead.