Under The Gun Review is continuing to roll out new features with the debut of Micro Movies, Presented by the members of UTGFilm, this recurring column dedicated to the world of short films. If you have a film to contribute or know of one we should feature, click here to shoot us an email!

Film: Familiar
Starring: Robert Nolan, Astrida Auza, Cathryn Hostick
Directed by: Richard Powell

Some stories take a few hours to tell. Epic stories like The Watchmen and Magnolia need around three hours to fully tell their tale. Hell, some movies, like The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, take three whole movies to get from beginning to end. Familiar is not one of those movies. This film only needs twenty minutes of your time to sufficiently creep you out, and it is a great twenty minutes indeed.

Familiar  starts out innocent enough. John Dodd is a mid-forties father with a daughter about to leave for college. Everything seems to be going fine, as John prepares to start the next phase of his life now that his kid will be moving out. Then his wife finds out she is pregnant again, and his mood changes drastically. Soon you find out that something much more sinister might be living inside of John than what he portrays on the outside…

The bulk of the dialogue in Familiar is a voice over. It is all the inner dialogue of John. This may sound tedious, but you will quickly feel voyeuristic and uncomfortable hearing this man’s inner thoughts. Robert Nolan’s acting is spot on. Most of what you see on screen is his facial expressions and he sells them perfectly. The first half of the film is the set up, and it can seem a little slow, but the second half is a visceral, gory twist that will leave you saying “what the fuck?” in the best way possible.

Essentially, Familiar is a dark trip through a man’s thoughts, climaxing in a great twist. For only twenty minutes of your time, this movie delivers more entertainment per minute than any horror I have seen on the big screen in the last year.

Review written by Justin Proper (follow him on Twitter)

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