Doug Bradley (Pinhead from HELLRAISER) stars as "Doctor Mathews" in this entertaining short directed by up and coming British director Frazer Lee, and based upon Christopher Fowler’s 1992 short story of the same name. It has taken me a while to finally see this movie, having heard mixed reviews of the film (many from Fowler fans objecting to Frazer Lee’s screenplay involving a framing device set in a nightclub).
In short, impatient businessman, Peter Thurlow (Charlie Boorman) wanders into a private dentist surgery without an appointment and demands that he sees a dentist immediately for treatment. When the receptionist (Beth Murray) tells him he must wait, Thurlow gives her the slip and wanders down the corridors himself in order to find a doctor. He stumbles upon a free surgery inhabited by Doctor Mathews who agrees to treat him, and given a local anaesthetic and then administered a sedative, which renders Thurlow unconscious.
From this point on we are treated to shots of the doctor carrying out a series of horrific operations on Thurlow in drifts in and out of consciousness, as the Mathews explains his past experiences as a practitioner. Eventually, it is revealed that Mathews is a psychopath who wanders into private dentist surgeries in the hope of finding one understaffed and with an empty theatre, and waits for the first impatient sufferer to wander in without an appointment for treatment.
Featuring some truly disgusting prosthetics and mechanical effects engineered by Bob Keen, and with a cleverly adapted screenplay, Frazer’s movie remains relatively unexposed amongst horror fans. A shame, because this 30K short appears to have the production values of a movie costing much more.
As for the framing device, it features my regular night-club SLIMELIGHT, and there’s no better eye-candy than some seriously sexy cyber-goths!
Carl T. Ford
Directed by Frazer Lee
UK / 1998 / 15 minutes.
Special Edition VHS features:
Mono / Widescreen 2.35:1 anamorphic