Warning This review contains spoilers!
A man, along with a woman who is presumably his wife, and a child, again presumably his daughter, are in what appears to be the cellar of some old lodging. The clothes look old and there is nothing there to roughly indicate what the date is. The father has brought in on some old cart a pile of bricks. He then dumps them on the ground and then grabs his daughter. He takes her and places her in some sort of large square indentation in the wall, and he then walls her up. Shortly after being walled up the daughter hears horrifying screaming coming from the other side of her “prison.”
Now it’s “two cycles” later and a young man (Gareth David-Lloyd) is sitting at a small table in that same cellar setting and has an old typewriter in front of him along with a glass of wine. He’s trying to type something up in regards to where he is, but he finds himself interrupted by a noise. Every time he looks he can’t find anything. Eventually he discovers the nature of this brick wall. He manages to remove a few bricks and finds that there is “something” behind the wall. He grabs some food and gives it to “it.” The food is taken and eaten and then this young man starts alternating between giving food and water. Then one day there is no response. He puts his hand through the hole in the wall to see if he can identify if anything is still there. He painfully discovers the truth, and then decides to act out a little bit of retribution. “It” lets out a blood-curdling scream and then the man turns to face something that appears to be bearing down on him.
For those who listened to our interview with Gareth, or read the Press Release about Black River Meadow, you will know that this was essentially the first part of a web series, and even Gareth stated that this short film was to raise more questions than answer them. It’s a very creepy horror short that has absolutely no dialogue. There is sound, which includes screaming, but not one word was ever spoken during the course of this short and that helps elevate the tension simply based on the fact that we have absolutely no idea as to what is going on. Gareth’s character is obviously disturbed by what is going on from the reactions on his face. Unfortunately because this is only the first episode of this web series, and because there was so little forthcoming in regards to answers, it would be impossible to properly evaluate this story on its content. Instead what can be commented on is the quality of the production. Good camera work, along with a good setting, helped to deliver just the right amount of creepy tension needed. Only time will tell if the story will hold up, but for now this is an outstanding first episode (it was also learned during the most recent interview with Gareth that this was a proof of concept). Gareth, as writer, director, producer, and actor in this project clearly has his hands full with the different hats he has to wear, but that is not evident from looking at Black River Meadow. There was nothing confusing about the narrative, even if it did withhold much needed answers, and the performances were all wonderfully consistent allowing for me to more easily get pulled in the short film. Where this series will go next is anyone’s guess, but for now we here at TG2 Studios will eagerly look forward to further episodes of this particular horror web series.
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