FIVE COURSE MEAL
Firstly, I’d just like to say thank you to Writer/Director, James Cadden for allowing me early access to an online screener of his 7-minute Horror/Thriller short “Five Course Meal”. Five Course Meal sees happy couple Mark and Jenny (played by Murray Farnell and Melissa Kwasek) take part in a mysterious trial that involves them being locked in a room together for an extended period of time – the results are shocking.
Five Course Meal plays out in a contained setting with minimal dialogue and just two characters. In addition to writing and directing, Cadden also served as cinematographer and editor (having previously shot most of his own work), doing a fine job in all departments. The framing is consistent, the edit comes together tightly, and the audio track is acute. As you can imagine, food plays a crucial part in the workings of the trial and both actors are willing to get more than a little dirty for their art. However, it’s Brendan Boyd and Kevin Kuzyk that deserves all the accolades here for their impressive molds and practical blood and gore fx. The climax of the film is a violent and memorable one. With the exception of a couple of synth notes toward the end, I didn’t find the score overly appealing, that and a little more context wouldn’t have gone astray regarding the experiment. What was bringing on the compulsions? What was the relevance of the food?
Five Course Meal marks Cadden’s eighth short film, and despite not being entirely fleshed out (pardon the pun), it’s still a very well made and entertaining little slice of horror. Just a bit of a heads up though: the subject matter isn’t for the faint of heart. The technical aspects are all very well-conceived, the actors appear to be having fun, and the end delivers in quite a matter of fact, and blood-filled way. You can check out the official trailer below and the film will be screening as part of Monsterfest in Australia on November 1st!
Five Course Meal – 8/10