Netflix Hidden Gems ; Dread
Welcome To Netflix Hidden Gems! Here The Horroronline digs through the Netflix Horror dumping ground to find shiny gems! Today let’s look at Dread a fantastic Clive Barker adaptation! Based upon Clive Barker’s short story of the same name, the film had its premiere at the 4th annual After Dark Horror Fest and was released straight to DVD. The story follows Jackson Rathbone’s Stephen as he befriends the effectively creepy Shaun Evan’s Quaid (who is on fantastic form here) at film school and they devise a project that will explore and document the fears of others. Firstly this little gem of an indie Horror deserved better than the distribution it was given. With little to absolutely no marketing on it’s release, it now finds itself wallowing in the smuck pile of unknown Netflix Horror films. Its an incredible shame that it didn’t receive a proper theatrical release, as it is truly one of the most brave, engaging and interesting horror films of the last ten years. There are no cheap thrills here, instead we are given complicated well rounded characters whose interactions always ring true. As the increasingly unbalanced Quaid Shaun Evans gives a nuanced and mesmerizing performance, he weighs the character’s likability with his dangerous unpredictability perfectly. Rathbone too puts in a performance that helps to quell memories of neutered vampire Jasper Cullen, giving the viewer an interesting and believable hero to root for. He masters the difficulty of giving a gentle and vulnerable character strength. Hanne Steen as Cheryl (who helps Quaid and Stephen in their project) gives an honest and well rounded performance portraying a female character who is interesting and powerful (which is wonderful to witness, when so many female roles in horror are utterly thankless) The direction, production and notably a fantastic standout soundtrack (featuring perfectly placed tracks by The Veils, We Are Scientists and Mellowdrome) all lift the film above standards usually expected for straight to DVD horror. This is true dedicated indie film making in action, its clear that a lot of effort and combined talent was put into the film, creating a wonderfully tense, enjoyably frightening and all round great horror film that the viewer is rewarded for investing their time in. A highly recommended watch for horror fans, it’s currently available on US Netflix and is definitely worth viewing!