A new horror film, Skinamarink, has been making waves in the Canadian indie scene for its unique blend of suspense and terror. The movie, directed by Kyle Edward Ball, follows the story of two young siblings, Kaylee and Kevin, who are left alone in their house after their father disappears.
As the night wears on, strange occurrences begin to happen, including mysterious voices in the darkness and the disappearance of windows and doors. One of the key elements of the film is its use of suspenseful, slow-burning terror that keeps the viewer on the edge of their seat.
The story is told through Kaylee's perspective, as she is the one who is instructed by a voice in the dark to look under the bed, despite the well-known rule not to do so. This creates an eerie and unsettling atmosphere, as the viewer is made to feel as though they are alongside Kaylee as she explores the dark and unfamiliar territory.
Skinamarink was made on a budget of just $15,000, but the film's minimalism and lack of fleshed-out narrative only add to its sense of unease. Ball drew inspiration from a common dream he noticed among people commenting on his YouTube channel, @BitesizedNightmares, in which a child wakes up to find themselves alone in the house with a monster.
The film is set in 1995, which adds to its sense of nostalgia and evokes memories of a time when there were fewer screens and sources of light, creating a sense of being trapped. The movie's style is particularly significant; it emulates celluloid cinema with a continual pop in the music and a grainy filter over the pictures, giving the movie a very vintage feel.
The emphasis of the film is on the tension, and the visual aesthetic reflects this. Low-angle shots of walls, ceilings, and shadows contribute to the sense of approaching catastrophe. Another aspect of the film that has been praised is its use of sound design.
The movie utilizes a variety of subtle and unsettling sounds to create a sense of unease and tension. From the whispering voices that Kaylee hears in the dark, to the creaking of the floorboards and the ominous sounds of the unknown outside, the sound design adds an extra layer of horror to the film.
Critics have noted that it's often the quiet and subtle moments that are the most terrifying, and Skinamarink does this with great effect. Even when there's no visible threat on screen, the viewer is always kept on edge thanks to the use of sound and silence.