Heya, folks. I had so much fun with short films over the holidays I decided to make it a semi regular thing. So here and there look out for installments of The Lair’s newest feature, Buggin’ On Shorts. Why is it called that? I have no clue. I was the first thought that popped in my mind and I went with it. Today’s short is one I’ve wanted to see for a long, long time. While Sam Raimi might have embroiled himself in the Spider Man franchise (1 out of 3 ain’t bad), an all female western (which I like personally), and a baseball movie (Seriously? WTF?), over the years, when it gets down to brass tacks, Sam’s a horror guy, and that had to start somewhere
Raimi made his first film in 1977 with the campy mystery It’s Murder featuring a young Bruce Campbell, and there was literally no looking back from there. Raimi’s third film Within the Woods (also with Campbell) is one I’ve seen many times, and I always enjoy seeing the potential he put forth in these early films. Today’s short was Raimi‘s second short film, Clockwork, and when I say short I mean short. While It’s Murder runs over an hour and Within the Woods clocks in at 32 minutes, Clockwork only makes it barely past the 6 minute mark. That’s not to say it doesn’t pack a punch, and show off Sam Raimi’s very first cinematic moments of horror.
The film stars Cheryl Guttridge as a woman returning home, and future writer/ producer/ Intruder director Scott Spiegel as a psycho killer coming to get her. Why? No time to say, and I mean literally. With no dialog at all the in the short, Raimi pulls out all the stops from the strange, disconcerting soundtrack to clever movements of the camera that hint at the Sam Raimi who would helm Evil Dead not more than three years later. Clockwork, filmed before Within the Woods, was as Bruce Campbell says in If Chins Could Kill “a test”.
The test would lead to a prototype (Within the Woods) which would eventually lead up to a finished work (Evil Dead). Without these six minutes, there is no way of telling if Sam Raimi would have ended up directing one of the biggest franchises in the world, if Bruce Campbell would have appeared in all those Old Spice commercials, or if Scott Spiegel would have directed Hostel III (Hey, Scott. You can’t win ‘em all buddy) So that about wraps it up for today. If I go on much longer it’s going to take you folks more than six minutes to read this, and that doesn’t seem fair. So I hope you check it out and let me know what you think, and until later this has been me, T.L. Bugg and I’ve been Buggin’ On Shorts.