Movies, music, cartoons, comics, food, and television. That's just the kind of stuff that keeps me up at night.
Pink Flamingos is nice, but Female Trouble is his best film.
In the wake of a tragedy the public starts to look for answers on why everything goes wrong. A common scapegoat for a tragedy is music. Musical artists like Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest, and Marilyn Manson have all felt pressure from the public because of misinterpretation of their music. (In Marilyn Manson’s case it was just a witch hunt, since Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold of the Columbine High School Massacre didn’t even like his music.) While the artists are not directly involved, they still feel the guilt over the calamity.
In the movie Black Metal, Ian (Jonny Mars), the lead singer of the band Crown of Horns, begins to go through a period of bleakness after one of his fans kills his teacher in cold blood. While Ian may have the ghastly black metal persona on stage, off stage he’s actually a calm parent who seems to live a typical life.
The tragedy begins to take a toll on Ian after a fight in a convenience store where he is confronted by a passer-by who blames him for the incident and even goes so far as to say that it was probably Ian’s child who committed the acts of murder. (This doesn’t bode well for the passer-by)
While it may be difficult to tell a story in under nine minutes, writer and director Kat Candler does a pretty good job of showing you the traumatic event and the chain reaction that comes from it. The film also doesn’t feel like it’s trying to capitalize off of the black metal controversies from Norway. Rather, this film depicts an artist influenced by the music who finds himself in his own dilemma caused by murder.
Jonny Mars is really good in Black Metal, due to time constraints it’s not easy for someone to give a a completely developed performance in a short film, but Mars was able to do it. While the title would have you think that you would see more of his black metal persona, you only really see it in the very beginning of the film. The majority of the film sees Ian as just an average guy.
The cinematography in the film definitely stands out. From the shots of the grisly murder scene, to Ian talking to his daughter in the middle of the night, everything is shot superbly well.
While the film has a somewhat abrupt ending, it’s very well done and worth a watch. I don’t watch a lot of short films (Unless you count cartoons as short films), but Black Metal was something that I couldn’t help but watch because of the subject matter. Even though it isn’t my favorite metal genre, it does have an interesting history behind it. However as I said before, this movie isn’t about that history, it is merely a backdrop for the story. You don’t need to be a metal fan to enjoy this movie, wouldn’t hurt, though.
Black Metal is an official selection for the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and can be seen for free on YouTube.