Horror Smorgasbord – Chvad “GUT” (2013)

So when I first heard about this film and watched the trailer I got a sense of the film but really didn’t know what to expect. I even made sure to shy away from reviews as to not spoil the film for me. Now this is an indie film and I am not sure about the budget but overall the film looks pretty good. Right from the start we get the sense that one of the main characters “Tom” is getting very disconnected from basically everything (work,family,friends) or I should say friend as his friend/co-worker Dan definitely feels that Tom is being very distant from him and I think almost feels kind of betrayed. We learn that Dan and Tom have known each other for a long time and I think that Dan and Tom each view their friendship in a different light. Tom seems to want change and looks like he is stuck in a rut, while Dan seems to like going through the motions and some may say that he might even be stuck in the past and at heart never really grew up.

One of the things I really liked about the film is the complexity of the characters and their relationships to each other. This film has a lot going on underneath the surface. Whether it is related to a person and their actions or as you will find out when you watch the film, related to an image or video in this case. The film is slow paced but I believe done so with the purpose to draw the viewer in deeper to the story and almost encompass us in Tom and Dan’s life. We see them at work, we see them at lunch, we see Tom at home with his family. We are looking into a window of their lives and a lot of the repetitious activity that you see might even let you relate to Tom and see his point and why he might want to change things up. Now as far as the relationship aspect the big one is between Tom and Dan. We get to see a video that Dan made of them when they were younger and Dan is asking him questions and Tom tells him to stop and you can tell that he is kind of fed up with Dan. To me this is a very telling scene in the film because I think that their relationship never changed from when they were kids. I would even go a step further and say that Dan seems to be the one that probably didn’t have many friends and Tom might have been his only friend (besides films). The attachment that Dan has to Tom is very strong almost like he is dependent on Tom. When Tom doesn’t show up to work one day Dan is very worried and is wondering where he is. When he finds out that Tom might be moving and he didn’t tell him about it it’s almost like you can see his heart breaking. While Tom sort of blows it off by saying that it’s in the early stages and nothing is planned yet, Dan sees it just like many of us who had a best friend that moved away when we were younger, it’s a big deal and a hard pill to swallow sometimes.

When the tape is introduced in the story is when we get the interruptions to their mundane repetitious lives. Dan who is a big horror movie fan and probably use to introduce Tom to a ton of weird films invites him to see a new film that arrived in his mail box. Now I will not say what it is that you see but you can tell that it strikes a cord with Tom. You can see in his eyes a look of disgust and also a sense of arousal. It’s like watching something bizarre and you know it’s wrong but you can’t take your eyes off of it and it stays on your mind long after the fact. I myself looked at the “film on the tape” almost as vulva symbolism like you would find in a Cronenberg film. Even later when Dan burns Tom the films on Dvd for him to watch himself, it’s almost like he lent him a pornographic tape. Tom was very secretive about them and even went to watch them downstairs by himself and tried to hide his watching them from his wife.

Like I said this film might seem basic if you just run through the film once and not really look for things but to me there is a lot going on in this film. Even the events that happen after the tapes start showing up and we the viewer are trying to figure out if someone has killer intentions or might be a victim in someones deadly voyeuristic games. I do not want to spoil the film but I do have my own opinion on the ending and to me the way I interpreted the last few minutes of the movie play a big part in with what I thought the ending was. Although I think the way that the ending was shot you can have a completely different opinion then mine and still find scenes to support different endings. Which I know piss people off sometimes but when done well I think sparks conversation and debate which means that the filmmaker did their job because the film has entered your mind on different levels. While this might be one of my longer reviews truthfully I have barely scratched the surface. The camera angles and the way the film was shot was very good and again play a big part in the film. The soundtrack fits perfect as the droning guitar does a great job at setting a tone in the film. Not only that but sometimes, (especially at a key scene in the end of the film) the lack of sound speaks volumes. It is like that saying “The Silence is Deafening”. Again I can go on and on but instead of making you read anymore I say that if you are looking for a film where you want to think and you have time to watch and really get into the film definitely check out Gut. However be warned. The film is what a lot of people call “a slow burn” and if you do not like that type of film you might miss something or maybe even get bored of it. I feel that you need to invest time in Gut to get the most out of it.






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