By MICHAEL GINGOLD
The grassroots feature is making its way around the festival circuit, and a sequel is already in the works.
Filmmaker John Nicol tells RUE MORGUE, “UNDERNEATH: AN ANTHOLOGY OF TERROR is a collection of sinister tales bound together by a handful of narrative vignettes. My goal was to reinvigorate all things creepy, a platform to bring scary back. In addition to the theme, we were all cognizant of the amount of fear we tried to establish.
“The film is comprised of five chapters, an epilogue and seven vignettes,” he continues. “The vignettes have a semi-linear narrative structure designed to lure the viewer into the next installment. The theme at play throughout the entire piece is simple: an unnatural or otherworldly influence, whether literal or metaphoric. The influence of demons on our domain, our sanity–or insanity.”
The movie’s parts are:
- BREACH (the vignette sequence), written and directed by John Nicol: An unstable individual is convinced that ominous cracks in his basement may in fact be a breach into Hell itself… Is he in direct communication with demons, or has he opened a portal into their realm of terror? Poisoned by the revelation of five tales, he succumbs to the mental strain on his increasingly damaged mind.
- CHAPTER #1: 6 AM, written and directed by John Nicol: A family man is running out of a medication that keeps his otherworldly visions at bay. Day by day, visions of murder and demonic possession take hold as Daniel succumbs to a maddening revelation.
- CHAPTER #2: MS. SHAPEN, written and directed by Andre Becker: A seemingly normal television set transmits the haunted memories of a killer.
- CHAPTER #3: PASSAGES, written and directed by John Nicol: A has-been writer discovers that passages in his writing can cause intense visions of madness…and that he can inflict the visions upon others, and himself.”
- CHAPTER #4: CERTAIN POINT OF VIEW, written by John Nicol, directed by Cory Ivanchuk: An experimental blast of demonic madness as seen through the eyes of those possessed.
- CHAPTER #5: I CAN CHANGE, written and directed by Andre Becker: A deranged young man is convinced he can transform into a demonic creature.
- EPILOGUE: ENTROPY, written and directed by John Nicol: Another experimental entry that wraps up the entire anthology–a haunting piece that seals the experience.
Nicol and co. are currently preparing to roll the sequel UNDERNEATH: BEYOND THE THRESHOLD next month, and have set up an Indiegogo page to help finance it; click here to check it out.