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Stay Hidden (Short, 2015)

StayHiddenStarring Jennifer Niles, Joshua Berman, Sharon Smyth

Directed by Andrew Sawyer


Lord, please forgive me for the atrocity that I’ve allowed to infiltrate my eye sockets… it’s name is Stay Hidden, and I honestly couldn’t think of a more appropriate title for a short film, for it also acts as a warning for those ready to press the play button.

Directed by Andrew Sawyer, the short focuses on a brother and sister (Berman and Niles), who are left at home by their needling mother to wait on the exterminator to show up for a routine sweep of the house, and their eventual game of survival against a duo of eyeball-stealing demons (I wish one had stolen mine before this got past the opening credits). As the two Party City-costumed incubuses commence their piracy of pupils, the siblings must find a way to save not only their behinds, but that of the collective town; and with the help of a local medium (Smyth), they might possibly manage to keep themselves out of needing eyepatches for the rest of their days.

Okay, I’m all in favor of low-budget short films and the potential creepiness they MAY possess, or the abeyant way they could reel me in with visual wonderment… not happening in this case, however. Acting? Non-existent. Fright factor? On a sliding scale, this one measures somewhere between the gauges reading “Golden Girls Reunion Special” and R.L. Stine on an anti-depressant, and if it weren’t for the slight smattering (notice I said SLIGHT) of plasmic gore, there really wouldn’t be much to celebrate here. As I alluded to earlier, it takes some serious guts to produce ANYTHING in this day and age and be willing to toss it in the feeding den for the pit bulls to attack, but Stay Hidden should have heeded its own title and done the same.

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Matt Boiselle