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Graveless - Skeleton Crew Films Print E-mail
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Written by Chris Mayo   
Friday, 11 January 2008

Directed by: Christian Ray
Written by: Christian Ray
Produced by: Christian Ray
Cinematography by: Andrew House
Editing by: Troy Vaupel
Music by: Glenn Ziser
Cast: Christian Fenn, Steve Schwetman
Year: 2005
Country: USA
Language: English
Color: Color
Runtime: 10 minutes


Video: NTSC R0
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Widescreen
Audio: Dolby Digital 2.0
Studio: Skeleton Crew Films
Official Website: http://www.graveless.com/

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"He wants to know what you're afraid of”

Garnering praise amongst genre circles as well as being selected for the FanTasia International Film Festival and Atlanta Underground Film Festival, “Graveless” showcases the filmmaking potential of neophyte director Christian Ray.

Shot in 2 ½ days and funded out of the directors pocket, this 10 minute short opens with a man (Christian Fenn) blindfolded and bound to a chair.  An electric saw can be heard cutting some unknown object in the background.  By way of the films awesome soundscape, water can be heard dropping, and we realize that the man is located in a shady abandoned building or dungeon.  A figure appears in a black rubber suit.  Its face is covered by a mask of the same material with large round lenses covering the eyes (for some unknown reason causing me to think about the “Guinea Pig” films).  The man in the chair pleads for his life and is rewarded with a hammer and chisel to his knee.  An alarm sounds and the man in black leaves the room.  Left in pain, but still alive, John Doe finds that he may not be alone in this torture cell as he attempts to escape his demise.

Graveless” shows great nods to James Wan’s recent “Saw”, as well as visually shaking the hand of such films as Dario Argento’s “Suspiria” with the films use of deep blacks and vibrant saturated colors of yellow, red and blue highlighting the picture.  With 2004’s “Saw” the killer captured his victims and forced them to commit odious tasks in order to survive, while Ray’s “Graveless” has his killer longing to know his victims darkest fears, eventually ending their life in such a way.  John Doe, the films main character admits his fear; as a child when he would use his parent’s trunk, taking out its contents he would pretend he was in a boat, setting sail for treasure.  One day his father came home and found the mess.  He beat the shit out of him with his belt and locked him in the trunk for hours.  The trunk was placed near the air conditioner, and after a while he would close his eyes, which sounded like the ocean, hence his ultimate fear of open water.

Along with great visuals of saturated colors, “Graveless” is also a very auditory film.  Despite its first-rate visuals for an independent DV film, you can almost sit back, close your eyes and enjoy the film without ever taking a peak.  With the films limited cast, the soundscape almost takes a life of its own playing a vital role in its effectiveness.  Being a mere 10 minutes long, “Graveless” acts as a YAHOO! 10 minute preview for a feature Hollywood film, they often use with the purpose of sucking the downloader into going to theatres to see the film in its entirety.  “Graveless” is a fantastic film and undoubtedly the best independent shot-on-DV short of its runtime.  Let’s hope Christian Ray gets the break he deserves to shoot a feature film. 

THE DVD

VIDEO:
1.85:1 Widescreen (choice of Anamorphic)
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AUDIO:
Dolby Digital 2.0
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SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIAL:
- Trailer
 

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3.22 Copyright (C) 2007 Alain Georgette / Copyright (C) 2006 Frantisek Hliva. All rights reserved."

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