Short Film Review “Familiar”

Director: Richard Powel
Cast: Robert Nolan, Astrida Auza, Cathryn Hostick
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 24 minutes

Our Score: 5 out of 5 stars

Before I got approached to review this short horror film, I was unaware of it.  But after watching the trailer for “Familiar”, I couldn’t help but immediately plug in to watch this short.  The trailer is really sets the stage for one hell of a fucked up ride.  but only gives a taste of what to expect. The film’s star is Robert Nolan delivers such a fantastically unsettling performance. Definitely not the squeamish but I highly recommend this for all horror fans.

I don’t want to give anything away but here is a brief synopsis for the film:  “Through a series of tragic events a middle aged man grows to suspect the negative impulses plaguing his mind may not be his own…”. Most of the dialogue spoken over the film by John’s voice in his head (or maybe more than that…gotta watch) and really seals the deal on John Dodd’s insanity.  The inner torment for John is so intense, it literally leaves you forgetting to breath. The film itself is simple yet completely devious and rather disturbing. For a low-budget short, the make-up effects are extremely impressive and add a lot to this film.  I couldn’t help but relate this film to the earlier works of David Cronenberg with “Dead Ringers” and Naked Lunch”.

Personally, I feel that the poster gives away some of the shock factor but still ends up throwing you for a complete loop. I was unaware of the fact that “Familiar” is actually a sequel to the director’s previous short sequel called “Worm”, which stars the character John Dodd’s brother, Geoffrey. I look forward to seeing that short next. Richard Powell is hot on my radar now and I can’t wait to see what he has planned next.  I also hope that this short gets the attention that it deserves but people need to see this!


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