Hey gang, Valkor here. When I first started venturing onto the interwebs, my first thoughts were "where da pornz at?" (That goes for most of you out there too, don't lie). Digging deep you come across sites with questionable material and I recall a site where I saw something that shook me up for weeks (I won't go into detail). Needless to say I can understand what the guys in this next film are going through from firsthand experience. Check it out it's Gut directed by Elias. And I'll admit… I was left a bit unsettled... in a good way.
Gut centers on Tom (Jason Vail) and Dan (Nicholas Wilder); two best friends who've known each other since they were kids. Now all grown up, the two work and hang out together. However away from work they lead separate lives - Tom is a family man with a wife and daughter. And Dan still leads the single life, though he's a bit eccentric. Lately Tom has been a little down in the dumps feeling the pressure of family life. So Dan invites him over to watch a film, which he states he bought off the internet. The film depicts someone slicing into the stomach of a woman, and then reaching into the stomach feeling around. Initially the two are fascinated by it and they start to question if it's real. But it's Tom who speaks out against it and wants nothing more to do with it. And yet since viewing the video he can't get the images out of his head. Imagery from teh film soon infilitrate his home life, appearing when he's making love to his wife Lily (Sarah Shoofs) or playing with his daughter. Dan orders up more vids and not only do he and Tom watch the vids, but Tom takes copies home, watching in secret. As for Dan, well more DVDs appear in his PO Box… without him having to order them. He doesn't think much of it until one vid arrives, which hits him right where he lives and that's when the film truly starts to unravel as he and Tom's friendship take a turn for the worse.
Gut is probably one of the slowest paced films I've seen in some time, but the ending, which could have been more visual, really caught me off guard. But that doesn't mean I'm against it. Far from it!
After watching the ending of Gut I was left unsettled and a tad bit shaken up; overall... I was entertained. Gut is psychological horror at its finest with gore kept to a minimum upping the creep factor tenfold. The plot is pretty straightforward and easy to follow, plus the mood is quiet, creepy and sets you up for some chills. As you follow along with the film you really get a sense of the main characters as you delve into their everyday lives, especially Tom whom the film seems to center on more so than Dan. The misery that he's going through, the back and forth with Dan and his wife, and the tensions after he watches the first the film – yea, you can feel it. Now Dan brings a level of dark humor that's twisted and fun, yet you wanna kick him in the face because of that goofy smile he has throughout. Not a negative, whether that's what the actor was going for or not, it instilled some emotions in me. And if I can walk away hating the character and liking the film, then I really can't complain! Towards the end, the films plays on Tom and Dan's crumbling friendship and it's very well executed. It's not in your face, knock down drag out, but plays out like how real friends might react placed in the same situation; it feels very natural. Next, the ending is what completely sells the film, and while it is predictable to some extent, I didn't feel let down. In fact it's the film's saving grace, because I was about ready to take a pass on this one. Well played Gut, well played. Finally I wanna give a PerfectView shoutout to Sarah Schoofs aka Lily for looking ever so yummy in a long T and not much else. Grrrr-rowl! Ultimately I was prepared to hate you Gut, but in the end you won me over. Nice job!
The film towards the end is predictable – above I said to an extent because you're not sure how far things were going to go. Not going into spoiler territory, but I think they could have pushed the envelope a bit further; Hey, its go big or go home right? Next, if you have little patience when watching any film, then you might wanna pass on Gut because it takes a really long time before anything tremendous happens (that ending). There's the gut slicing, but those scenes are few and far between. However the ends justify the means and you really need to hang in there with Gut.
The Ugly: A little spoilerish… Dan's face; I haven't seen a face take a pounding like that since Irreversible.
Gut is available now in digital video format on iTunes, Amazon Instant, YouTube, CinemaNow and more. Fans of psychological horror will definitely want to check this one out – it's unsettling, creepy, and overall entertaining. Yes it drags, but you'll be well rewarded at the end. And out of TOV 5 stars, I give Gut a 4 and it's been Valkor Viewed, TOV Approved.