Texas Frightmare Review: Nailbiter


NailbiterPart of the fun of Texas Frightmare Weekend comes from experiencing the new voices in independent cinema. Patrick Rea's movie Nailbiter serves as a great example of this. Before directing and co-writing his first feature, Rea has made a name for himself writing and directing award-winning short films, including Time's Up, Eve and Get Off My Porch. His writing and his meticulous work behind the camera put him ahead of his peers.

When writing Nailbiter, Rea and co-writer Kendal Sinn start by playing off our natural fear of Mother Nature. A family traveling through the Midwest becomes stranded in a random basement by a tornado. Immediately, we find that not all is well as a mysterious creature and a dark secret are attacking family members, one by one.

The camerawork shines above all else in this thriller. Rather than using the now-tired "dirty camera" to excess, the lens glides along the action at an almost comfortable pace. Nailbiter is gorgeously lit, creating eerie contrast with the gruesome narrative.

Also contrasting the narrative's horrific nature is the lack of gore -- Lea chooses to leave the violence just off-camera, as opposed to seeing how much Karo syrup he could get away with using in each scene. The result is a unique combination of old-school suspense and thrills with modern horror sensibilities.

With Nailbiter, Patrick Rea takes our natural fear of nature and pushes it past the boundaries of natural terror.

Keep an eye on the Nailbiter Facebook page to find out when the movie will screen next.