Select Page

Short Cuts: The Short Horror Review Roundup for February 2023

Tuesday, February 28, 2023 | Short Cuts


Hello, short horror gourmets! Welcome back for our latest batch of Short Cuts, where on this month’s menu we’ve got a gorgeously horrific animated tale, an unexpected slasher/clown mashup, and an exploration of the horrors of being a housewife in the 1950s. Bon appétit, and as always, if you or anyone you know have a short film you’d like me to consider or if you’ve got some news you’d like to share in the short horror world, please contact me via Twitter or email me at!

Death and the Winemaker (2021)
16:57 minutes Director: Victor Jaquier Starring: Kacey Mottet Klein, Virginie Meisterhans, Jean-Claude Dreyfus, Jacques Roman, Séverine Bujard, Stéphanie Schneider, Marie-Claire Dubois
We often use storytelling as a means to make some kind of sense of the seemingly random ways the universe can hurt us. In Victor Jaquier’s case, he’s taken a sadly romantic approach to explaining the origins of the Plague’s arrival in France. A humble winemaker, seeking to prove himself worthy to marry his love Mathilde, takes a challenge from Mathilde’s father to have his wine deemed worthy by The Pope. En route, however, the winemaker finds himself face-to-face with Death, who deems his wine worthy but also reveals that her next soul to collect is none other than Mathilde. In a desperate move, the winemaker traps death in his wine cask with unintended ramifications that impact not just him, but an entire country around him. Jaquier uses animation that is both rich and disturbing to weave a tragically beautiful tale about the havoc we sometimes wreak in the name of love.
Where to find it: Streaming on YouTube

You Missed a Spot (2023)
12:12 minutes Director: Liam Walsh Starring: Michael Lyons, Tiffany Stringer, Noel Olken, Hap Lawrence, Trey Cosner
Liam Walsh’s short film is a delightful twist on the slasher genre, as long as you’re not coulrophobic. Walsh imagines a world where everyone is literally a clown, and having your makeup wiped off means certain death. And of course, in a world of clowns you can’t do better for a silent slasher type than with a mime (Noel Olken), right? So yeah, that’s what we’re dealing with here, and Walsh plays with the Final Girl trope in a fun way by having the main protagonist be another mime in Ike (Michael Lyons), the shy boy who works to defend his crush Mindy (Tiffany Stringer) as the Clown Killer runs rampant on a teenage clown party. It’s about as goofy as you’d expect, and a hell of a lot of fun.
Where to find it: Streaming on YouTube

Satisfaction Guaranteed (2017)
12:07 minutes Director: Yue Ma Starring: Alexandra Hensley, Paul Keany, Craig Bruenell, Jennifer Sommer
When lonely ’50s housewife Joanna (Alexandra Hensley) sees that her husband Walter (Paul Keany) has become dissatisfied, she takes drastic measures to become a better wife. Namely, she undergoes a surgery to have her arm replaced with the Wife-O-Matic, a multi-purpose tool used for cooking, cleaning, and other means of satisfying Walter. But when Joanna realizes that the issues in her marriage aren’t based on her inadequacies but rather the fact that Walter is a miserable prick, she takes matters into her own upgraded hands to free herself from Walter in gloriously bloody fashion. Ma builds a world of mid-20th century pastels to contrast the ugliness at the core of gender dynamics in that era (and in this era if we’re being honest). There’s a satisfying level of wish fulfillment not just in Walter’s gory end, but in Joanna’s realization that she’s not the problem in this situation.
Where to find it: Streaming on YouTube

Bryan Christopher