By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Disclaimer: a preview was provided by the director.
You never know where to find cultists from the Esoteric Order of Dagon (ala H.P. Lovecraft). The Call of Charlie is a wonderfully whimsical short film written by Nick Spooner (who also directs), Guy Benoit and John Simpson who brings the scares in a different kind of way. Why fight it when you can embrace it? This short film is making its rounds at select horror film festivals and comic conventions around the world. A schedule can be found on this film’s Facebook page.
Although never explicitly said, I’m guessing Mark (Harry Sinclair) and Diane (Brooke Smith) are from that cult. They seem like everyday folks who invited a friend, Charlie (Sven Holmberg), from work to dinner — or so they say. They are setting him up on a blind date. But when old friends Jay (Evan Arnold) and Virginia (Roberta Valderrama), unexpectedly show up, the night is going to hell in a hand basket in a downright hilarious way!
The scares are jovial in nature and the gore is handled with simple off-camera shots to convey a sense of you must not look lest you lose your mind. Jay is the only character who shows signs of wavering sanity as the evening can only go one way. Arnold conveys a charm to show he’s the only character who realizes what’s going on. The hosts handle the “threat” well, and they act like this occurrence is not above the norm. When you’re a cultist honoring an Elder God at home, common courtesy is a must!
5 Shoggoths out of 5