Nightmares From Hell

Nightmares From Hell

***

Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode

What keeps you awake at night? For adults it tends to be worrying about things like work, money or relationships. For kids it's simpler but often more traumatic. In this short film, a group of children talk about the fears that haunt their dreams.

There are commonplace phobia subjects here - spiders, zombies, clowns, the dark - and more unusual ones, like feet ("I just don't like them"). Each subject is illustrated with appropriate imagery, some of it drawn using felt tip pens, some of it modelled. The interplay between these forms is sometimes nightmarish in itself, effectively conveying the shifting focus of dreams. The spiders are particularly tricksy, scurrying about when you don't expect them.

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Talking about fears is difficult and the children here are to be commended for their honesty. This is an intimate and very endearing film. It's also delightfully quirky. One child talks about fear of a man with bright green eyes and one very big ear.

A great choice for viewing with a young child who is bothered by nightmares, this film manages to put the scary things in their place at the same time as celebrating the power of imagination.

Reviewed on: 18 May 2012
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An animated exploration of nightmares and the different things that children are afraid of.

Festivals:

Southside 2012

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