29 January 2014

Lord of Tears 2013 - REVIEW

One of the best things about being a film reviewer is having access to films that I normally would never hear about. There is a steady flow of films coming in either by mail or digital download but never have I been so excited to receive one as I was when Lord of Tears came in. The packaging itself was more than impressive. It was neatly wrapped in black paper and tied off with a ribbon and a single owl feather garnished the top. Not only that but the DVD came accompanied by a CD of the soundtrack and a booklet. Absolutely has to be the best review package I've ever received. 

School teacher James Findlay (Euan Douglas) has been plagued by nightmares involving a disturbing Owl type creature. After the death of his mother, he inherits the family's sprawling Scottish mansion. However, she also gives specific instructions for him NOT to go there due to a breakdown he had there as a child. Believing that his nightmares are linked to the event in his past, he ignores her warnings and decides to go anyway hoping to uncover the truth behind his dreams. Once there, he meets Eve (Alexandra Hulme), the charming and mysterious American who works at the estate. Together they try to find the answer to the mysterious happenings at the mansion. It isn't long before James discovers that nothing is as it seems and he will have to fight for his life in order to survive the mansion for the second time in his life.

When a film relies so heavily on a very small cast, it's important for casting directors to bring in actors who can comfortably breathe life into their characters. Lord of Tears is not a dialogue heavy film which, in my opinion, puts a little more pressure on the cast since they have to convey their emotions more through actions and other visual prompts. Douglas' portrayal of the introverted Findlay is quite impressive given that his only acting experience is one short film prior to this one. The inner struggle eating away at his character is present throughout and his timid interactions with Eve seem genuine. Hulme brings such likability to the character of Eve. She's fun and energetic and full of life and the complete opposite of James making each scene they're in better than the one before.

Director Lawrie Brewster's visual interpretation of James's internal conflict is quite stunning. Lord of Tears is laced with bits of Lovecraft inspired imagery that brings an artistic feel to it. Writer Sarah Daly takes ancient folklore, ritualistic sacrifices and biblical references and weaves them into a striking tale of trepidation. There is a very constant, very heavy sense of dread throughout the film that helps propel the story forward. There are scenes that will stay with you long after the credits roll and that to me, is the sign of a good film. If you're a fan of fast paced, in your face horror, you might want to pass on this one as most of the action takes place in the third act. However, if you can handle a well done, slow burn horror, I would definitely recommend Lord of Tears.

You can purchase the DVD here and be sure to check out their Facebook page to stay up to date on all the info.

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