Dark Wind Woods & My Dying Bride (2006) – By Jordan Garren

 After reviewing Kipp "Poe" Speicher’s "Dreadful" in the last issue of Rogue Cinema, he eagerly sent me two more films he had worked on. This was a definitely a double-edged sword though, because I enjoyed one film and didn’t really care for the other. First up is Dark Wind Woods, which was directed, edited, written, and produced by Greg Laudermilt. (Kipp served as the director of photography on this flick.) This film my friends, is the one I didn’t like. Dark Wind Woods starts out ok, and develops a creepy atmosphere right off the bat. And the fact that it’s set up like an old black and white silent film (complete with title cards that show people’s dialogue) is very unique and original. But about six minutes into the film, I began to realize that there wasn’t much substance to this short.

Essentially, two people venture into the Dark Wind Woods through an old wooden gate. Said gate suddenly disappears and soon the curious duo is running terrified through a dark forest, full of odd creatures and I guess, dead people. By the end I think that they two main characters die and end up as denizens of the evil, haunted woods, but I’m not totally sure because I lost complete interest in the movie! For a short film like this, it actually runs too long! (At approximately twenty-six minutes!) Had Greg Laudermilt cut the film down to a mere five or ten minutes tops, I think I would’ve been able to sit through it without hitting the fast forward button. Though the film looks cool, it just doesn’t have any substance and was just plain tedious to sit through. Sorry Greg!

On the brighter side, Kipp Speicher’s My Dying Bride is a very dark and brief short film (only five minutes or so). It’s visually set up like his previous film Dreadful (black and white with a bit of red blood) and the story is completely open to all sorts of interpretation. All we see in this short film is a pretty girl dressed in her wedding gown. As she solemnly strolls toward a pond, we see that’s she’s carrying a hammer that’s dripping with blood! As she reaches the pond, she drops the hammer into the water and that’s it! It’s over! This short is the first of many similar short films that are based on actual nightmares! (Kipp told me so in our interview that is elsewhere in this issue of Rogue Cinema!) Kipp once again creates a moody piece here that is quite memorable, short, and sweet!

For more information on the films of Kipp Speicher and to keep up to date on his latest projects, visit his Myspace Page!