Based on the Clive Barker story first published in 1984 as part of his Books of Blood anthology, Dread, tells the tale of two college students who embark on an interesting school project.
Directed and written by Anthony DiBlasi, Dread has a fascinating premise. It centers on loner film student Stephen Grace (Jackson Rathbone) and adventurous philosophy student Quaid (Shaun Evans) who engage in a project on fear, interviewing subjects on video and delving into their very worst fears in great detail.
Quaid, an expert manipulator, is the driving force behind the project, managing to get the students to reveal their innermost demons, all the while harboring his own deep rooted psychological scars.
Supporting the belief that by confronting your ultimate fears, an individual will either overcome their phobia or be consumed by it, Quaid manages to convince Steve and friends Cheryl (Hanna Steen) and Abby (Laura Donnelly) to partake in the study. Setting off his own twisted chain of events, Quaid manages to progress to these actual physical and psychological nightmares to produce the darker footage that he desires.
The theme of this movie is compelling and clever and kept my interest with its steady progress. Dread never really becomes boring because of its concept and how it draws you into the characters and their own stories. The cast, including Twilight and The Last Airbender star Jackson Rathbone, manages to create an eerie atmosphere and a suspenseful viewing pleasure.
Not everything totally works or is 100% convincing or as effective as it could be but this movie was still a really positive surprise for me after randomly stumbling upon it. A great psychological horror which I think horror fans and non-horror fans will both enjoy some aspect of it. It’s both original and well done. Dread is a good movie to watch if you’re looking for something new.
WICKED RATING: 6/10
Directors: Anthony DiBlasi
Writer(s): Anthony DiBlasi, Clive Barker
Stars: Jackson Rathbone, Hanne Steen, Laura Donnelly, Shaun Evans
Studio/ Production Co: Essential Entertainment, Matador Pictures, Midnight Picture
Length: 108 mins
Sub-Genre: Drama, Thriller, Psychological