Short Film Review: Killer Date

January 18, 2017

Written by Capt McNeely

Georgia Division ZADF Twitter: @ZADF_ORG

Killer Date

In this digital age, the way in which people meet up and date has changed drastically. While some rely on more traditional ways of meeting people, others are relying on various online sites and apps. One such person is Mike, who is about to meet a young lad, whom he met by way of dating app. However, this is not a new experience for him, and the readers of his popular blog can bear witness to this fact. It’s likely that his dates are often the subject of his blog, and it’s just as likely he would rather these women not be aware of this before they meet him.

Enter Abby, the young woman he’s meeting for coffee. They introduce themselves and after a bit hug vs handshake awkwardness they start the whole getting to know you process. She seems kind of timid, admittedly not getting out much. They share pleasant conversation and seem to be getting along swimmingly until they realize the coffee shop is closing up shop for the night. But Abby insists that their night doesn’t necessarily have to come to an end , and invites Mike back to her place for a drink if he’d like. With things going so well, perhaps Mike will want another date with Abby.  Well hold on there tiger, you might want to survive tonight before thinking about going on a date with anyone ever again.

Killer Date was directed by Carlos Omar De León based on a script he and Vorasine Vince Phrommany wrote together. It’s not so much a scary story, but it does lull the viewer enough with the niceties between the characters to lead up to a disturbing finish. The only unsatisfying thing about this film is the fact that it is a SHORT film and the ending seems somewhat open. It would be interesting to see where the story could go and learn more about the Abby’s motivation, even though lack of motives can be even more unsettling.

Jonnie Stapleton and Desire Jansen, in the roles of Mike and Abby, give very genuine performances. They share  great chemistry and interact very naturally with each other from beginning to end. To single out on over the other is just absolutely not possible. They are able to quickly transition from the awkward getting to know you period, to a sense of comfortable rapport between the two leading into the unexpected conclusion of their date(at least for Mike), without any feeling that the performances were rushed or forced.

Visually, the film was shot and edited well, specifically in the way the passage of time is conveyed. The settings were well suited to create a sense of normalcy and comfort before dropping the viewer into a much less desirable final setting.

This short felt like a hook to grab the attention of a studio or financial supporters in order to create a full length feature. In fact it made me think of the original Saw short film that James Wan and Leigh Whannell made in 2003, with the intent of shopping it to studios. After watching this move I began imagine different directions in which this story could continue on. To the filmmakers, PLEASE take this as a suggestion to perhaps expand on this story if you are so inclined, since this particular story and the use of dating apps are so relevant today. All in all, I would have to give Killer Date 7 ½ /10.


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