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Bed of the Dead (2016)



Synopsis

Four twentysomethings find themselves stuck on a haunted antique bed where leaving means suffering a gruesome death. Plagued with frightening hallucinations, they must figure out the bed's secrets before they are ultimately picked off one by one.




Review

How can you not watch a film called Bed of the Dead?

The film begins, rather strangely, with a scene of some shady monks using a tree in some sort of occult ritual - which then later gets cut down and made into an ornate bed. Okay. Cut to present day and police detective Virgil Carter is investigating a fire that caused some deaths - in a room with a very ornate bed. Then flip back in time to last night where four people are "hiring a bedroom in a sex club to have a fourway". Is that a thing? Huh. I'll go light on spoilers from here on in.

The film runs a duality piece. In the present you have Carter trying to work out what happened and in the past you have four party people stuck on a possessed bed. That's loosely the plot.

Carter is a fairly atypical horror detective. He's a drunk, of course, on the edge - who isn't? - just shot a kid on duty. Played by Colin Price (The Heretics), Carter is the protagonist for one of the two timelines. It's a solid performance, even if the character is a little stale.

Our four party people are played by Alysa King (Slasher), Gwenlyn Cumyn (Barbelle), George Krissa (Blood and Fury: America's Civil War), and Dennis Andres (Lady Psycho Killer). The performances jump from solid to trite - with some amateur actors in lead roles. In a film like this - and I'll get to that - I don't expect much from my, shall we call them, victims.




Utterly bathed in style, Bed almost falls victim to it's own awesomeness. Conceptually, the film is genius. A possessed bed that once you are upon it, cannot leave it. Time flashing back and forth is always a winner. But it doesn't quite work.

Major plus goes to the feel of the film. It's both gripping and different. The atmosphere in the watching is great. It's supremely gory, and the effects are far better than I expected. It gets rid of the annoying characters with ease, and leaves a sublime feeling of satisfaction in their wake.

Directed by Jeff Maher (his debut feature), Bed of the Dead is a very pretty film from the get go. Maher is an established Cinematographer, and it shows. The shots are artfully set - it's all very heavily stylish. It was written by Maher and Cody Calahan (Antisocial) and while the plot is cleverly eked out, some of the dude-bro dialogue is a bit clunky.

Overall it's well worth watching. It has an ocean of blood in it, the performances are worth seeing, and it's well put together. It is a product of what it is. I can happily say that it is a low budget horror, with aspirations to be nothing more... and it achieves it effortlessly. I actually recommend it, if you want a film that is easy to watch and pleasingly horrifying.





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