Regardless of whether you enjoy in-your-face scares or psychological mind games, horror can be hard to get right. Misplaced music, the wrong type of lighting, a poor angle -- there are a lot of small details that can easily ruin the suspense. That's why we appreciate it when someone nails it -- especially in the space of less than three minutes.
David Sandberg's "Lights Out", an entrant -- and winner of Best Director -- in Bloody Cuts' short film competition the Horror Challenge, is one such production that hits all the right notes. By the end of its two minutes and 42 seconds, you'll be spending tonight with the lights on, your doors closed and your head firmly under the covers.
That said, I found the build up more intense than the pay-off, but then I was constantly reminding myself that some sort of scare was coming.
If you'd like to see how the final shot was put together, you can check out this short clip. You might be surprised by the "source".