NORTH BEND FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW: SWALLOWED

  • Director: Carter Smith
  • Writer: Carter Smith
  • Stars: Jena Malone, Cooper Koch, Jose Colon, Mark Patton

Review

Showing at The North Bend Film Festival, Swallowed is a body horror treat that has great performances and really icky body issues!

Benjamin (Koch) is leaving to be porn star and Dom (Colon) is giving him a night out before Benjamin moves to L.A to start his career. Dom Wants to give him one final gift of cash before he leaves but to do that he needs to visit his cousin. It quickly becomes apparent that drug smuggling is how the cash is going to be got and things are about to get really bad because they are are forced to swallow the bagged drugs and the drugs may not be what they seem…

Swallowed balances its queer leaning story along with the body horror aspect. Dom and Benjamin maintain they are just friends, yet as the night wears on Dom and Benjamin start confessing things to each other until it is clear that their relationship goes beyond friendship. This makes the body horror aspect all the more horrifying, not only are you watching your friend deal with something awful but now there is the added layer of other feelings bubbling up to the surface.

Director Carter Smith gets the film flowing, quickly establishing what is going on in this story before changing it from under the audiences feet. He alternates between being discreet in some shots and explict in others, these decisions worked really well, regardless of if they were decisions made on the fly or dictated by the script.

Swallowed is a seriously good body horror that remains fairly rooted in reality as much as a story like this could be. Really great performances from Malone and Colon, with Colon and Koch having great on screen chemistry. Koch though is unbelievably good as Benjamin. Not a comfortable film but then the best body horror films rarely are.

Played as of The North Bend Film Festival.

Ryan Morrissey-Smith | Twitter: @TigersMS78

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