Candid Cinema

‘Rust Belt Driller’ Review

By: Amanda Guarragi

Renn Maxwell (Aaron Krygier) seems to have everything going for him. He has a manager that cares, he’s a very strong visual artist, who is able to have private art gallery screenings. He has a beautiful home, as he lives with his partner Carol (Jillian Geurts). However, there has always been this dark cloud that has followed Renn all his life. The modern world has definitely affected Renn’s mental health because of how chaotic and dark it can be. His demons begin to creep out and bleed into his work. The darkness that followed him, is now inside him, and madness begins to unfold.

What Tilke Hill and David R. Williams do extremely well is subvert the viewer’s eye when executing the kills. There are strong experimental elements that allow the audience to understand what is happening visually, without it being too gruesome. The editing allows the images to be quick and choppy to get the final product of the kill, which makes it interesting to watch. The kills are the most memorable parts of this film because of the drill and how Renn Maxwell marks the spot through his artistic portraits of his victims.

The more clouded Renn’s mind becomes, the worse the kills become. He gets disoriented, and his version of reality is skewed. It’s interesting to see the use of sexual moments being used in different ways. It’s almost as if the arousal should not be there in certain cases because of the woman that is plaguing Renn’s mind. The repressed anger that is there, haunts his present relationship, as he is taken into the depths of his mind. The direction is unique and the structure of this film has you glued to the silent destruction of Renn in the performance from Krygier.

Hill and Williams, are able to explore anxiety, depression, and the chaos of the modern world through horror. It is an interesting approach to show the horrors of the world, eventually affecting the mind of the artist. What does Renn draw from? What inspires him to move forward? Why is he leaning towards the darkness in order to create? All of these questions arise and are explored throughout this film. Through the jump-cuts, disorienting score, lighting, gruesome images, and of course, the bloody drill, this leaves Renn’s journey up to interpretation.

The film just premiered at Dances with Films Film Festival and are now heading into Buffalo International Film Festival October 7-11th! If you’re a horror fan, definitely check this one out.

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