LOOM *** USA 2018 Dir: Kevin Rothlisberger. 32 mins
The directorial debut of actor Kevin Rothlisberger, this is an engaging 1970’s-set mash-up of sub-genres, beginning with a young urban stud (Rothlisberger) taking his girlfriend (Daniella Argyros) on a camping trip for some smooching. Their cosy nocturnal plans are interrupted by a group of 70’s-style brutish, rapey backwoods hicks who speak in familiar threatening lines: “You city folks don’t know when to shut the fuck up!” The audience already knows something the others don’t about our protagonists but, before she can be subjected to abuse, Argyros gets the upper hand while her powerless boyfriend looks on. Rothlisberger cannily invokes the nostalgic spirit of classic monster movies and EC Comics and offers some atmospheric monster-in-the-woods action enhanced by the evocative cinematography of David Christopher Pitt and Daniel Gillette’s original score. The leads are charismatic, and the left-field twists are good fun.
Review by Steven West