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Telluride Horror Show reviews: Brutal Relax

REVIEWS - MOVIES

Sun, sea and surreal murder - that's how Mr. Olivares does it...

Telluride Horror Film Festival Reviews: Brutal Relax short...

To qualify as a 'short', a film must be longer than one minute and shorter than fifteen. Now, with the standard feature running at around 90 minutes long, one could be forgiven for wondering how a 15 minute presentation could produce the same quality, depth and enjoyment as its feature-length brethren. Well, as Brutal Relax shows, it's more than possible, delivering an outrageously entertaining experience for all.

The recent production of talented directors Adrián Cardona, Rafa Dengrá and David Muñoz, Brutal Relax follows Mr Olivares, a stressed individual in desperate need of a vacation. However, in a twist worthy of Shyamalan himself, our poor protagonist soon finds himself surrounded by a supernatural outbreak; one that threatens both his existence and, most importantly, his relaxation.

And yet, this Matt Lucas-esque character remains oblivious to the destruction around him, concerned more for the fading sound of his beloved cassette player. As the sound fades, so does his incognizant nature, and a whole new side of Mr. Olivares is revealed...and this is where the short really finds its feet.

The definition of a horror comedy, Brutal Relax was, for me at least, one of the highlights of the Telluride Horror Film Festival, and it's easy to see why. From start to finish, the short features the obscurity of a true Hor-Com classic, yet quantifies it all with a simple - yet satisfying - storyline. Moreover, the strength of José Ma. Angorrilla's (Mr. Olivares) performance further accentuates the absurdity of the situation. Whether coating himself in mud, cursing his cassette player or  using a (recently deceased) child's body as a makeshift bat (and yes, you read that correct), Angorrilla expertly portrays Olivares' enigmatic state of mind; making him critical to the shorts success.

Put simply, Brutal Relax is a beautifully shot and entertainingly simplistic story, with a significantly dark undertone. Upon viewing, one can expect a truly unique experience; a sort of Shaun of the Dead meets Little Britain affair, before birthing a totally new, perturbed  offspring. OK, it's ridiculous, but does that matter? It does the basics as well as any before it, and is guaranteed to shock and amuse simultaneously.

Still not convinced? Well, it's available to view for free over on YouTube, so I've attached the video below for you to enjoy. As such, why not grab 15 minutes, sit back and see what you think; worst case scenario, you lose 15 minutes - and who doesn't waste at least that on Facebook?

4 stars


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Adrián Cardona

 

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