Evening with My Comatose Mother, An (Short, 2011)
Written and directed by Jonathan Martin
An Evening with My Comatose Mother tells the story of Dorothy (Macy), who has been hired by the Poes to watch over Mrs. Poe’s comatose mother (Hill) while they go to a big Halloween party. It should be an easy enough job as the only things Mother needs are to be checked on regularly and changed if she has soiled herself. The Poes leave, and Dorothy gets comfortable in the gigantic house amazingly decorated for the spooky holiday. When she calls her boyfriend and gets dumped, she decides to not worry about Mother too much. Big mistake.
Sitting next to Mother, on her bed, is a clown doll. Clown dolls being creepy enough on their own, this one has an odd resemblance to Mother. The doll is scary from the get-go and only gets worse. Once the evening’s events get under way, it becomes clear that the doll is not the only malevolent being in the house, and as things progress, poor Dorothy is put through the emotional ringer. And that's all I'm going to say about the storyline as to explain more would give away the fun of this movie.
The story here might go in some expected ways, but it is the execution of it that makes it so enjoyable. The acting ranges from quite good to very good. Missy Hill does an amazing job as Mother, and Wendy Macy is a convincing lead, showing fear without going over-the-top too much. The effects are on par with most higher budget, longer length genre films, and the look of the movie in general is very polished.
At a little over half an hour long, this “short” could very well have been turned into a full-length movie, but at the same time it works perfectly at its current runtime.
An Evening with My Comatose Mother is spooky in all the right ways, building tension and not relying on jump scares with the clown doll giving me (and the rest of the audience as well judging from their reactions) the creeps the second it appears on screen. The story, acting, décor, music, and effects are all so well done they feel like they belong in a much bigger, more expensive movie, making this short entertaining and fun to watch. A perfect treat for the Halloween season.
3 1/2 out of 5