Review by Paul Grammatico
As a wannabe writer, it’s always a difficult endeavour to create a decent idea that’s in any way compelling. When attempting to script a story that’s ripped from the headlines, makes it an even harder chore. It takes research, interviewing witnesses and law enforcement, and the dilemma of either telling the straight story (which is near next to impossible), or to use some form of artistic license. Aside from interrogating the perpetrator, you may never form this story into accuracy, delving into the realm of a Rashomon conundrum. Killer Concept, a horror/comedy offering produced by Dead Leaf Productions and distributed by Indie Rights, gives us a three-way where one of the characters knows slightly more about the story than the other two.
A writing team consisting of Seth (Coley Bryant), Holly (Casey Dillard, who co-produced and wrote this film) and Mark (Glenn Payne, who is the other co-producer and directed this film) get together to form a true crime story where a killer has slayed three women in their area. Within the various creative battles amongst Seth and Holly, Mark is left alienated and alone. While Seth and Holly perform research on this resident killer, Mark finds this superfluous because, well, he is the local exterminator unbeknownst to his cohorts. While his colleagues spout their creative theories, Mark converses with pictures and various body parts of his victims for guidance. With Seth’s discoveries and Mark’s infatuation and abduction of Holly, the trio gets locked in a battle where art becomes life.
Penned and helmed by Ms. Dillard and Mr. Payne respectively, the duo creates an interesting take on the creative process where a tale of nonfiction ripped from the headlines where the actual killer is involved in its creativity. Putting themselves in the actual film that they wrote and shot and talking about the writing process between their characters brings it to a mega meta level and provides an extra dose of fun.The chemistry between the three characters are excellent. Mr. Bryant is wonderful as the headstrong and obnoxious Seth, Ms. Dillard is terrific as the tough, blunt Holly, and Mr. Payne is great as the meek but murderous Mark where, after a dry spell of slaying, takes advantage of a situation that falls into his lap at the film’s conclusion.
Killer Concept is an intriguing film where a human triangle of tension closes in on itself where curiosity and attempted creativity in two points of the triangle while the third point is fighting off slander while not letting the other two points aware of his intention. If you enjoy the type of film where you know more than the protagonists do, then this film is for you.
The film releases on Amazon Prime and other VOD platforms on May 21st 2021