There’s a distinct level of uneasiness that comes with settling down to watch something put together by somebody you know personally.

How do you break it to them if you didn’t think it was that good? Will they actually believe you if you tell them you thought it was great? And can you cast aside the previous knowledge you had of just how much work went into the project?

So, when Movie Ramblings site blogger Damon Rickard threw his latest short, The Package, our way, I admit I wasn’t sure how to approach it.

But, and I thank Damon tremendously for this, The Package turns out to be bloody good fun and a thrilling, menacing 14 minutes or so that certainly continue the good work he showcased in The Tour last year.

A bruising, brutal tale that shifts into very different territory in its closing moments, The Package starts off as a gangster-ish tale of pain, with Man 1 (Tom Gordon) kidnapping Man 2 (Dan Palmer), strapping him in to a chair and threatening all sorts of bloody retribution unless he fesses up to the whereabouts of ‘The Package’.

And threaten he does, with Gordon exuding bad intentions, snarling his way through the short – in between some nasty business with a pair of pliers and a hammer and nails.

Palmer on the other hand comes across as a bit of a cocksure wanker, happy to laugh in the face of adversity, even if that adversity includes having his fingernails removed.

The pair work really well as a double act, bouncing off each other to great effect as Rickard (who also wrote the script) keeps the audience guessing as to not only what exactly is going on (and who is in the right/wrong), but how this will eventually play out.

To reveal too much of the film’s climax would really spoilt the surprise so I’m going to steer clear of that, but it certainly ends things on a high.

The Package certainly adds to Rickard’s growing reputation as a genre talent with very definite promise, and here’s hoping to many more projects from him in the future.

Short Film Review: The Package
4.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)

About The Author

Simon Fitzjohn

Simon is a journalism tutor in London, who also just happens to be a movie fanatic, with a craving for the darker side of cinema. He has written two books, one on the horror films of director Bob Clark (2014) and the other on the history of the character Norman Bates (2015). His third book, on the work of British exploitation director Pete Walker, is due in 2017.