Friday, November 15, 2019

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: The Shed

A teen and his best friend endure nonstop torment from bullies at school, but that soon changes when one discovers a bloodthirsty creature that resides in a country shed.

6 of 9 viewers "Liked" "The Shed" (2019, USA)
Creature reviews have been minimally altered in an attempt to maintain their voice:

Lord Battle - "Shocking kills and excessive gore used to be all I needed in a film. The Shed delivers on both and despite a confusing collateral damage kill, it's awesome! I would pitch this film to fans of Dream Warriors or The Lost Boys but the narrative feels more like nostalgic virtue signaling than homage. Honestly Fright Night might be the best comparison to make, yet I can't bring myself to do it. Tom Holland's 80's vampire adventure was loved by a young Lord Battle because of its clear acceptance of televisions rules for vampires. The Shed seems to pick and chose rules carefully surrounding convenience and ultimately excluding religion. As someone who praised Insidious for removing religion from a haunted house and making it work, I find it lazily ignored here. Kinda like they chose to ignore the invitation rule because it would require a conversation with the antagonist where motivation or backstory may be needed... Again, the gore is great! - 2.5 Stars

KillDozer - "13 year old me would have enjoyed this based off the blood and Salem's Lot style vampire alone. 39 year old me needs more. So rent this for the kids, pop some corn, and have fun!" - 2.5 Stars

The Berkeley Blazer - "There's a lot of fun to be had in this movie, it's not smart but it does have many moments where it successfully subverts expectations mainly in terms of how it controls jump scares. Characters start out with potential but fizzle into the random plot points that spiral out of control. Entertaining but forgettable and had some impressive effects work. It's also impressive how much tension and suspense is built using the shed as a horror fun box." - 3 Stars

Math Mage - "It's a vampire. There's a vampire in the shed. That's not a spoiler 'cause it's directly shown in the first 4 minutes. However, they can't say vampire for some reason, except indirectly through a movie in a movie in a dream sequence. In most movies with a fake out dream sequence, they only do it once (unless it's about dreams) but this one has several so they get more out of it. Unfortunately, that's the only interesting thing in the film." - 2.5 Stars

Wondering Panda - "Combine a trouble teen, war vet uncle, recently turned vampire who hates sun, a shed, an asshole best friend, a love interest, and a werewolf looking not a werewolf bully and you have The Shed!! This film has a lot of problems but I can honestly admit I had a good time. Its tone is all over the place where it flip flops between genres and never takes itself seriously and I believe it works for the film. The Shed is a fun, just throw it on and let it play." - 4 Stars

Huntress - "I was already rooting for The Shed solely based on the name, premise and half of the trailer. After a tense and bloody opening scene, I was sold. But the more I realized that this was not a movie about a monster in a shed, the more my enthusiasm quieted. There are a lot of great elements to this movie, and I loved the ominous portrayal of the dark little shed. But this movie doesn't know what it wants to be, and I'm not thinking that hard about it." - 3.5 Stars

Jiggly Bits - "The story was predictable but managed to hold my attention throughout. The shed was a nice touch because it created an element that anyone who has ever had to pick something up from their shed or basement could relate to. The shed, basement, small bathroom, and attic all utilize the space or lack thereof to contribute to the overall tension of the scene. This cinematic feature that has been used in many horror genre films in the past continues to be a source of fun in this film. Staging and use of light and sound were also effective cinematic features utilized in the film to enhance the tension of the scenes in which it appears. Overall, the combined use of genre specific elements created a solid genre horror film, but was lacking in that there was nothing in the film that deviated strongly from that formula." - 3 Stars

The Impostor - "The Shed's poster really intrigued me with its simplistic and mysterious nature. I had no idea what it was about but went in excited, looking for something entertaining and fun. The main characters grew on me as the story unfolded but lost me as the final act approached. A few jump scares for me were effective even when I saw them coming. Overall solid film, it's not perfect but kept me entertained with some unexpected moments and cool gore thrown in. I'd recommend it as a Friday night popcorn film with friends." - 3 Stars

Dr. Gonzo - "Giving this a 3 for entertainment value. A very simple vampire tale. It starts off with a man trying to escape a vampire, vampire bites man, man runs to a shed, man turns into vampire in the shed. A troubled teenager finds a vampire in the shed and tries to keep it a secret. the hero girl we have the asshole friend and the asshole bully, and that mean ass grandpa. It's a new age film with an 80's setting. The kills were fun, but it was too predictable. Watching this once was good enough for me." - 3 Stars

The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

In a Hitchcockian fashion, The Shed shows us a monster in the first few minutes of its runtime. The beast is quickly trapped in the titular shed where it transforms into a living metaphor.

The Shed played second on its review night, following a film that had a... deliberate pace and all of the creatures in attendance were eager to watch something a little more upbeat and fun. Although The Shed turned out to contain both of these things no one was ready for what the film was actually about.

The Shed is superficially a story about a teen and his pet monster, ala The Pit, and audiences who expect this will be extremely disappointed. The true monster in The Shed is a teenage boy's anger, which is represented by a vampire stranded in a small shadow in a large sunny field. Tonally the film feels confusing as we jump back and forth from a story that could easily end in a school shooting to a PG-13 genre film from the 80's.

When the film came to a close it seemed like the audience was split when talking about which parts of the film they enjoyed. Some creatures thought the impressive gore effects distracted from the real horror in the story, while others thought even attempting a serious narrative was a mistake. Everyone seemed to agree that a less seasoned audience may really enjoy the film. And as pretentious as that sounds, the message is really saying show this your friends.

-Lord Battle

The Overlook Theatre materialized in a Residence for a screening on 11/7/2019
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.

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