Angry and directionless, stuck in a mundane call centre job and drinking like he’s Oliver Reed on a Berlin stag do, Warren (Oliver Towner) is a man adrift, barely able to keep in check the rage and frustration building within him. When a spot of workplace bullying by brown-noser Greg (Sam Kacher) results in him lashing out and being fired, Warren stalks his nemesis, catching him alone in an alley, brutally beating him into a coma.

His life at rock bottom, Warren begins seeing a psychiatrist (Robert Eldridge), knocks the drinking on the head, enters into a fledgling relationship with former work colleague Emma (Lizzie Davis), re-establishes contact with his elderly, virtually comatose grandmother. But as he gets his life back on track, Warren is hiding a dark secret about his past. And just what does he intend to do with that gun hidden in his drawer?

Just because one can make a film for £10,000, it doesn’t mean one should.

While I admire writer/director Matthew Heaven’s drive, his ambition, his singlemindedness in realising his creative vision on a micro-budget, it might have been nice if he’d had a creative vision to start with. A revenge thriller made by someone who’s seen a revenge thriller once and thought “I can do that!” Accountable feels like a student short no one thought to edit and manages to make ten grand look like a lot less. Pedestrianly shot and lit to give you the nagging feeling you may have cyanopsia while the film’s few decent aerial shots just make you think “Someone got a drone for their birthday…”, Accountable packs a lot into it’s slim 75 minutes, most of it from the bumper book of movie cliches.

Speaking as someone who regularly wakes from an alcoholic stupor to find himself lying on the bathroom floor, I can attest that this is not a successful strategy to have pretty girls at work lining up to throw themselves at you. Even the self-harmers with daddy issues tend to find it off-putting. However, it seems to work just fine for Warren who, despite being thoroughly unpleasant and morose, can’t seem to get rid of nice girl Lizzie and their performances are adequate if a little thankless. Seemingly unable to open up and articulate his feelings, Warren never actually shuts up, narrating his thoughts as he scrawls in his journal (Paul Schrader, you have a lot to answer for!) or subjecting his comatose victim Greg and his locked-in granny to his stream of expository consciousness and the eventual reveal of his big secret to the least convincing, most inappropriate psychiatrist this side of The Prince Of Tides comes as little surprise.

Positing the notion that the road to good mental health is paved with retaliatory violence, that the cure for childhood trauma and abuse is just to commit a few murders and settle down with a nice girl, Accountable may accidentally be the bleakest film I’ve watched this FrightFest.

 

Horror Channel Frightfest Review: Accountable
1.5Overall Score
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)

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