Starring Puri Palacios, Gonzalo Fiorito, Diana Fernandez
Directed by Tony Morales
“Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf?”
I’m always on the look-out for new killer short films, and it is with this in mind that I jumped at the chance to check out writer-director Tony Morales’ new quick flick BEC (Black Eyed Child).
Morales impressed the hell out of me with his previous short Hada and his follow-up is just as creepy, crawly, and nightmare-inducing. Think Insidious meets IT (without, you know, the clown).
This new short follows the tale of an elderly woman who must constantly be attached to a breathing machine. Creepy already, right? It gets much worse, trust me. One night this old woman is sleeping when she hears a noise downstairs. Slowly she makes her way to the top of the dark staircase and looks down. What she sees marks the beginning of a night of terror she (might) not live to see the end of.
I don’t want to say much more about the short’s plot, but I think it’s safe to say there is a Black Eyed Child contained within. And for those who might not know (I didn’t) the titular entity is based off a real legend surrounding Black Eyed Kids (or BEK) which are quite simply “unnatural children who have the ability to hypnotize people into complying with their requests.” Oh, good.
As always, Morales’ new film is filled with terrific horror imagery and characters. The old woman is played to vulnerable perfection by Puri Palacios, and the designs for the titular Black Eyed Child and his demonic buddy are aces. And like all effective short films, you can tell there’s a much bigger story happening outside the edges of this film.
Morales excels in world-building, and while this short could completely stand as the opening ten minutes of a classic new horror film, it’s really Morales’ killer understanding of the art of silence that put his films over the terror-top. He brings you into the horror and leaves you stranded, with only the silence to keep you company in the dark.
Add in a slick, polished visual style and constant frights (without a jump scare in sight) and Morales is a filmmaker that will be giving even James Wan a run for his money in the near-future. In fact, I’d see Morales right at home directing the next entry in either the Insidious franchise, The Conjuring series, or any number of The Conjuring spin-offs. The guys is that talented, no question.
In the end, Tony Morales’ Black Eyed Child is as solid a ten-minute horror short film as I have seen, and if you dig quality horror shorts, make sure to seek out it ASAP.
And speaking of seeking the short out, it will be screened soon at Fantasporto, but unfortunately, there are still no selections for festivals in the United States as of yet. That said, you can follow the film on Facebook for updates RIGHT HERE.
Tony Morales’ Black Eyed Child plays like a super-creepy mixture of James Wan’s Insidious and Andres Muschietti’s IT (without the clown) and would feel right at home within the Wan’s Insidious universe.