Short Film Review: Psycho Path

Vloggers often seek out decidedly dangerous thrills in the constant chase for views. Some perform stunts on skyscrapers, others stage elaborate ploys. Backpacking adventurer Laurel Rhodes (Abigail Wilson) finds her own special draw in going on hidden trails alone.

Trouble is eventual, and happen it does when she takes a wrong turn and ends up in a derelict cabin. Strange markings on the wall tease a malefic ritual in the making. But in face of the cold rain outside, Laurel chooses to take the risk of staying.

Directed by Dan Robinette (Tethered, Nervous Breakdown), Psycho Path promises more than just a madman in wait. The twist remains effective in his hands, even if dedicated horror connoisseurs might have an inking towards the ritual in question.

Much is owed to his masterful crafting of the journey towards answers. Tension mounts from the start with the first presence of ominous signs, as seen through Laurel’s lens. The stylistic choice invites easy comparisons to The Blair Witch Project, yet there is little reliance on the disorienting nature of found footage for scares.

In fact, most of the short film comes in standard footage, its carefully devised shots designed to evoke anxiety. Beyond cinematography, silence is used just as well as the menacing score. In one such still frame, Laurel climbs onto the top ledge of the cabin, careful not to make a sound. Below her and just inches away, the apparent would-be killer sits quietly near an unconscious body.

The creepy atmosphere Psycho Path conjures is enough to keep one on the constant edge, even in its brief span of ten minutes. If Laurel Rhodes did not get a viral video out of her little misadventure, perhaps the fame could deservingly go to this artful genre piece, done right by horror fans.

Special thanks to Dan Robinette and 4 Leagues Media for sharing this film.

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