Date From Hell (Review) They can be a nightmare…



Firstly, I’d just like to say thank you to first-time Co-Writer/Director, Ven Scott for allowing me access to an online screener of his debut 11-minute Horror/Thriller short “Date From Hell”. In Date From Hell, we’re introduced to young Texan couple Susie and Bobby (played by Ava L’Amoreaux and Samuel Howard) who are enjoying a quiet drink at a bar. Shortly after having a lover’s spat, they’re targeted by a psychopath inside a dilapidated building.

Date From Hell opens with the production smarts of some valuable drone shots showcasing the little town that lies at the core of this quick tale of horror. Brandon Torres’s cinematography and framing are well crafted and the mix of synth and rockabilly sounds from Tim Driscoll supports the overall tone nicely. The heavy reds captured within the lighting help create an effective atmosphere and the acting is serviceable. Date From Hell’s selling point is its practical fx work and blood flow climax that results in an entertaining eleven minutes. The audio is hindered somewhat by a noticeable muffle, especially in the first half, and the yellow tinge on some of the external lighting is a touch distracting as well. I would’ve liked to have heard the score intensify in those final moments instead of the restraint we get from a dreary non-distinct theme.

Maybe it’s because I, myself, made a “date” themed horror short that Scott’s premise initially appealed to me, who knows. Date From Hell is an entertaining condensed tale of terror reminiscent of something like “The Violent Kind”. The camera work is good, most of the music works, and the colorful lighting adds to the otherworldly setting. There are a few shortcomings, but given it only runs 11 minutes it’s well worth your time. Keep an eye out for this one coming soon!

My rating for “Date From Hell” is 7/10