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Cutting Moments (1997)
Excellent Micro-Budget Anthology
Five strange little horror films that, thanks to the inventiveness of the filmmakers, manage to rise above their obviously limited budgets. I received this from a friend on a double-sided DVD that also includes the movie Buried Alive. I watched this first, expecting it to be the lesser of the two, but hopeful, considering the Tom Savini quote emblazoned on the box art, that it might surprise me. It certainly did, and for a freebie, there is no cause for complaint. The acting - all seemingly from 'semi-professionals' - is uniformly awful, the effects cheap and nasty, but the ideas more than make up for that. Other posters have gone into the plots in detail, so I won't bother, but I agree that the Bowl Of Oatmeal is the least enjoyable segment. Interesting, but not as much fun as a crack-smoking mutt or a nagging old biddy driving her murdering husband nuts! The final titular short is thoroughly nasty, and even I, a David Cronenberg fan, had to watch it through my fingers! If you don't find the sight of a woman cutting off her own lips with a pair of scissors disturbing, I fear for your sanity...
My only question would be the year of production. There are next to no credits on the end of the Region 2 DVD, and although IMDb claims this was made in the late nineties, the cinematography would suggest it was all made on the cheap - perhaps as student films - in the 80s. In fact two of the films have clear 80s references; the old couple's gravestones say they died in 1987, and the teen-movie short has repeated references to Breakfast Club star Molly Ringwald. Have they tacked on four 80s flicks to the recently successful Cutting Moments short to make a feature? (If that's the case, what has happened to these filmmakers, who show a lot of promise in this collection?) Or are they all from the nineties and the two films I mentioned are 'period pieces' - Principles of Karma being a parody of the 80s teen-movie, for example? I hope someone else can update IMDb to ease my curiosity...
But anyway, if you can forgive the poor production values and you like macabre tales, you're in for a short, sweet treat!