Director: Conor Boru
Writers: Conor Boru and Ed Hartland
Starring: Ed Hartland, Jared Rogers, Octavia Filmore, Kaitlin Reynell, Yasen Atour, Ronja Haugholt and Vår Haugholt
Our world is obsessed with murderers and serial killers. There is no end to the amount of real-crime documentaries or films available to watch with more being made every week. That’s what Conor Boru is satirising in When The Screaming Starts, a mockumentary that follows an aspiring serial killer before he’s committed a crime, rather than investigate it afterwards.
Aidan (Ed Hartland) is the aspiring serial killer. A documentary maker, Norman, decides to follow him around to capture something ground-breaking on camera. After his first failed attempt to murder a former bandmate, Aidan makes the decision to start a cult instead and hosts interviews alongside his girlfriend to choose people to join their family.
This is a seriously funny film. It has the humour you’d expect from a mockumentary, with a twisted darkness that you’d expect from a horror/comedy. The performances are all great. Everyone is natural and plays their roles seriously enough to highlight the deadpan comedy.
There is a lot of violence when the killing starts. It’s not too gory, but there is a lot of blood and everything effect-wise looks great. It’s shocking and intense in the best way possible. It takes a while for the violence to start, but when it does there’s no stopping it.
Aidan is an expert on serial killers, his house is filled with books about them, his walls lined with horror film posters, and he spouts off advice about what serial killers should do. When picking out his outfit he says, ‘you don’t want people thinking you’re a terrorist, when you’re a serial killer with no political affiliation’. There are tons of memorable and quotable lines.
Films like this are all about the characters and When The Screaming Starts is full of oddball characters. The main family consists of Aiden, his girlfriend who is obsessed with death, a local fishmonger who sees slicing people the same as slicing meat, repressed twins who want to let loose, a woman who is clearly unhinged and a yoga lover who joins by accident due to a language barrier. It’s a great group that work well together as the killers.
When The Screaming Starts is a fantastic, quirky and smart horror/comedy. It’s original, inspired and filled with great energy and so many laughs. This is one to look out for and if you’re a fan of the mockumentary genre, then it’s really worth going out of your way to watch. There is rumblings of a sequel/spin off and that would be perfect.