A Ganache On The Street Report: The Devil’s Well Premeire
On Friday night January 19th, The Pint headed to the southerly Connecticut city of Norwalk to attend a film premiere. Sir Jon was unable to attend, although as opposed to his absence from one of the CT Cult Classics showings that I wrote about, this had less to do with bad tacos and more to do with overtime at work. As I am prone to do in cases as such, I scooped up Pint contributor Lloyd, aka Manster and we took the nearly hour trip to see what was in store for us.
Having arrived at The Factory Underground, a music recording facility where the showing would take place, we got in what could best be described as a very suspect looking elevator and headed to the basement level. I commented to the only other gentleman in the lift with us that this appeared to be the perfect elevator for a fight club. He laughed politely at my shitty joke. More on him later. We arrived to a fairly bustling lobby area, replete with cold sodas, hot popcorn and made to order snack sized waffles. Manster may want to write a review of the waffles for the site as he expressed his love for them quite often. Frequent Pint guest Larry Dwyer of CT Cult Classics along with his programming partner for those events Mike Simonetta showed up and we began chatting. Topics ranged from Larry’s laid back attitude to tattoo appointments, Mike’s dislike of Amityville Horror 2 and what may happen if you ever see Larry when a blacklight is on. I’ll leave that to you to ask him next time you see him. Writer/Director Kurt Spieler and his filmmaking partner Nick Papazoglou introduced themselves to us, and worked the room like two guys doing their best to promote their film. Oh, the film! We are two paragraphs in and we have not even discussed the entire reason we took the trip, besides the waffles.
The Devil’s Well is a low budget horror film made in Connecticut by Spieler, a CT native from the Waterbury area. I checked out the trailer on YouTube early in the week and was impressed by the look of it, and was wondering what genre this would fit in. It appeared to have elements of found footage mixed with a faux documentary. Not being a die hard horror fan, I was honestly skeptical about whether I would like this film, and afraid Kurt and Nick would lock me in the weird elevator if I had nothing nice to say about their project. Luckily as film rolled and the room full of viewers settled into the movie, I felt as if we were in good hands right from the start. The basic idea behind the film is this; A husband and wife team of paranormal investigators take on a local spot infamous for it’s supernatural lore. Oh, and if you were ever curious the very fictional Devil’s Well is located in the even faker Woodsfield, CT so don’t really go looking for it. Anyways, the wife goes missing during the investigation and the husband gets accused of being behind her disappearance, or maybe even death. A year later, the husband hires a new team of ghost hunters to return to the site to see if they can figure out what happened to his wife. There, that is all I will say about the story itself, because anything more would be too much. It is a slow burn and builds anticipation, and dread steadily. If you are a fan of jump scares, despite there being at least one moment that made me audibly murmur a noise that was neither word nor screram and possibly pee a little, this is not that movie. This is a psychological thriller with really good performances throughout and excellent production values. Spieler and Papazoglou put together a tight film at about 90 minutes that had no moments of fat that I can recall. One of my favorite qualities of a great film is when the ending sticks in your head for the next few days after initially seeing it, and the ending of The Devil’s Well is burned into my brain. I described the film as low budget, which it is, but these guys are obviously very good at stretching dollars and making a very professional looking product with less.
After the screening the two filmmakers had Larry up to moderate a Q & A session, discussing production, cut scenes and where The Devil’s Well prop resides today(some dude in the audiences back yard) and Kurt’s possibly reckless attitude towards working with blank rounds while filming. Oh, and the very important budget for candles used in the movie. Kurt gave me some time to get a quick audio interview with him and we hung out for a bit longer, as I really was not looking forward to getting on that damned elevator again. I am slightly claustrophobic if you can’t tell and by slightly I mean totally. Oh, and that guy that I made the terrible joke to prior to the showing turned out to be the lead actor in the film, Bryan Manley Davis who showed what a good actor he is by laughing at my stupid comment. If you want to check this film out, I implore you to start looking for it on Tuesday January 23rd, as it will be released on DVD and other home video options. Stay tuned to The Pint in the coming weeks to hear our interview with Kurt!