Dread was a movie that was produced due to the whole 8 Nights Of Horror thing they do (or used to do) honestly I haven’t checked into it enough to know if they still do it or not. It was this thing where they would have somewhat indie horror movies in the theaters for way cheaper than normal movies around Halloween time. I didn’t see it in theaters but it was recommended to me a few years after the point it came out and I saw it and liked it. It’s a psychological horror movie. To be fair I only saw it once and will never see it again because it bugged the shit out of me (in a good way) so that’s why I’m going to review it to the best of my ability on memory, as I think people should see it. This won’t be a spoiler free review.
The movie is about a bunch of students trying to make a student film on the fears and phobias people have. The problem is that they have kind of “employed” a crazy ass dude who is intent on making people face their fears head on (without their consent) because well…he’s a crazy ass dude. For the student film, they go through the process of interviewing people about their greatest fears and phobias and how it affects them. As well as how they overcame the fears (if they did) and all of that. There are a bunch of people shown with fears but the crazy ass dude really only picks out a few.
Once crazy guy has his victims in mind he goes through the process of making them face their worst fears one by one. Which is where the movie gets super fucked up. There is a girl involved in this with a skin condition that leaves patches of dark skin all over her. If I had to guess it was Vitiligo but I also don’t remember if they mention in the movie what’s wrong with her. He sleeps with her and films her naked then broadcasts the video to the rest of the college she’s at. Her fear always having been to be exposed like that to people, and this prompts her to climb into a tub full of bleach to scrub her skin raw to try to get rid of the imperfections.
If that’s not bad enough one of the WORST fucking things he did was this. There was a guy who reported having an accident when he was young and losing his hearing. For years he was deaf because of this but then his hearing came back. He says he was terrified of losing his hearing again because it was terrifying not to be able to hear. The crazy ass dude kidnaps him and takes away his hearing again. At first, he does it by drugging the guy and tying him up and reducing his hearing with metal cups taped over his ear, inducing panic in the guy when he wakes up. This evolves into shooting the cups off of his ears with the gun essentially rendering him deaf permanently (and busting his ear drums) as well as completely insane.
It is after this point that he kidnaps one of the other filmmakers on the crew. She says that she’s a vegetarian due to a fear she had of her father. Turns out that he worked at a slaughterhouse and would always come home smelling of blood/meat and be drunk and molest her. He locks her in a room and essentially starves her until one day he offers her a steak to eat. She’s repulsed by this and won’t eat it, until it gets to a point she’s starving and eats what is pretty much a rotten steak. Yes, he films all this too. The other filmmaker on the team knows his friend is missing and goes looking for her. Of course, he goes to crazy ass dude’s house. The guy that was made deaf by the crazy ass dude also goes looking for him but is crazy and ends up stabbing the well-meaning would be hero guy of the movie (okay to be fair it’s been a while since I’ve seen this I THINK that’s what happens but he may actually kill crazy ass dude cause I don’t remember).
Anyway, this movie was one hell of a ride. It’s a psychological mind fuck. The acting is really good and you almost instantly empathize with the people who have the phobias and what they are going through when they are forced to confront them without any sort of consent (or wanting to get over them) in the most horrible way possible. It’s not an overly bloody or gory film but it is something that should tense you up and make you go like “WHAT THE FUCK?” a few times. I had to actually stop it in the middle for a ten-minute break because it was bothering me so much, which is why I like it. I’m not sure what the general reception of this movie is otherwise but I do know that it’s one of my all time favorites and I would recommend it.