Not many horror movie trailers can make you desperately want to see the film, but at the same time, actually physically dread watching it.
The soon-to-be-released #horror flick, Still/Born, is one of those movies. Recently, the Still/Born team released the first scene of the movie as a sort of teaser. The intense scene will stir up all sorts of emotions for viewers, but will especially strike fear into a certain subset of moviegoers: parents. Exclusively available from Bloody Disgusting's YouTube channel, here's the clip.
It appears the scene was uploaded in a format that only works for Google Cardboard, so if your browser doesn't play it in non-VR format, it's also embedded on Bloody Disgusting.
The Who, What, When & Where of 'Still/Born'
Still/Born premiered at the Overlook Film Festival this weekend, held at the Timberline Lodge, The Shining's famous hotel. This Canadian film is the directorial debut of Canadian Brandon Christensen, and it stars Christie Burke and Jesse Moss. Yes, that Christie Burke, as in Renesmee Cullen from the Twilight movies!
Burke and Moss star as Mary and Jack, a couple who give birth to a still born child. After losing one of her twins, a grieving Mary becomes convinced a supernatural force is after her other son. Bloody Disgusting has a fairly spoiler-free, in-depth review ready for you to read. The film not only serves up some scares, it examines how men may react when their partners are suffering from a mental illness, and how women can be afraid to let their partners know what they're feeling, for fear of being scoffed at, or thrown into unwanted psychiatric treatment.
There's no word yet on a USA release date, but according to Bloody Disgusting, it'll have its market premiere at Cannes later this month.
Let's Discuss 'That' Scene
The opening scene is terrifying enough, but only someone who's brought a child into the world, or lost a child before it arrived, truly knows just how terrifying it is. And if the rest of the movie is half as gripping as this scene, then we're in for one hell of a ride. Just look at the nurse's face, and you'll get a sense of what your face might look like.
When Promoting Goes Too Far
This little bit of advertising could turn out to be a genius move for the studio, or it could completely backfire. If it goes the way they hope it does, and generates more interest in the movie, then great. But can you imagine, having lived through the devastation of giving birth to a stillborn child, and not knowing how the movie was going to open? You sit down in the theater, only to relive that nightmare? There could be waves of people leaving the theater less than two minutes into the show.
While there's the chance that this clip could generate massive interest in the movie, there's also the possibility it will do the exact opposite. Having lived through the trauma of stillbirth, would you go see this movie if you know what's going to happen in the first couple minutes? Knowing this, some folks may not even purchase a ticket, let alone step in the theater.
I get it. Horror movies tend to stretch the boundaries of what's acceptable and what's not. And if this was a movie about cannibalism, demon possession, or killer dolls, then the discussion might be different. But if you have a friend or family member who's lived through the tragedy portrayed in the opening scene, and you ever get the chance to talk to them about it, there's a good chance one or both of you is going to end up in tears. It's such an emotionally exhausting experience for all those involved, and the director is truly taking a risk starting Still/Born off on such a heart-wrenching note.
Whether the rest of the film will be this gripping — and this potentially traumatic — remains to be seen; we'll have to keep our eye on the reception at Cannes to see if Still/Born is a success.
Knowing all this, are you still excited to see Still/Born? Let me know in the comments. If you've had an experience similar to what's shown in the opening scene, and you feel like sharing, feel free to send me a direct message on my Twitter. Or, if you're comfortable with it, the comments are open for discussion as well.