Horror Favourites – Jonny Grant

A twisted tale of torture and bloody revenge The Dare explodes onto screens this Halloween penned by brilliant scriptwriter Jonny Grant.

A rare family night for Jay (Bart Edwards) takes a brutal twist when he is kidnapped, waking up chained to the wall of a squalid basement with three other prisoners. When their sadistic captor emerges, his face hidden under a gruesome skin mask, Jay soon realises their time is quickly running out. Jay must engage in a twisted battle of survival to solve the puzzle of his imprisonment, unmask their tormentor and save the lives of his family.

Pulling no punches with its shocking and bloody story of survival, The Dare is a bold and brutal horror thriller packed with sickening twists and gory shocks. Not for the faint hearted, The Dare will have you on the edge of your seat this Halloween

Starring veteran horror actor Richard Brake (3 From Hell, 31, Mandy), Richard Short (Mary Kills People), Bart Edwards (The Witcher), Alexandra Evans (Silent Witness) and Robert Maaser (1917). Directed and co-written by Giles Alderson (Arthur and Merlin: Knights of Camelot, A Serial Killer’s Guide to Life).

Below Jonny Grant the writer of The Dare talks about his favourite horror film THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT:

“I saw this in the cinema back in 1999. I was just shy of turning fifteen, and looked super young so it was 50/50 that I was even going to be allowed in to see it. I was buzzing I even managed to get in. I’ll never forget that Saturday afternoon; the atmosphere was fire. The friend I went with didn’t like it, just like a lot of people don’t now, and I just didn’t understand. It hit all the right notes for me, and gave you nothing – which even now is rare, we usually see a monster of some kind, even if it’s the very last shot of the movie. But TBWP stuck to its guns, and left it entirely up to the audience’s imaginations, which I loved.

I never thought I’d be creeped out by a pile of rocks, but there I was. That was the genius of it, how subtle it was. It wasn’t the rocks that were scary, but the context of the rocks, the way they set it up. The way they planted the final scene early on then paid it off in such a way that left it stuck in your head for days, wondering. I suppose, the more active your imagination is, the more you’ll be affected by the movie, because it leaves so much with you to consider.

It was definitely a case of right place, right time. The internet was just blowing up, and the marketing was perfect. I was obsessed, and I loved the realism, the fact that I wasn’t 100% sure if the case of the missing students wasn’t real. I had a wall in my bedroom full of Blair Witch Project posters, and I still have the journals that they put out as merch. Good times.

The pacing is just perfect, things escalate so quickly but so naturally too. It feels like so much happens, so quickly but it never feels rushed. That increasing sense of dread as the students move to the belly of the beast. It’s so relatable too, we’d all crap ourselves in that situation, go a bit crazy, argue, and

The character work is awesome, each of the three students feels distinct, with clear arcs. Heather Donahue is so fantastic it’s still hard to tell for sure if she’s actually acting or simply reacting to the horrors around her.

I lived right near the woods for most of my childhood, and spent a lot of time in there. The idea that there was a cackling old witch in there gives me chills to this day. I don’t think there’s anything creepier, she never dies, just waits. That final scene; still my most haunting image in cinema history.”

The Dare is available on Digital Download 5 October and DVD 12 October from Lionsgate UK

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Alex Humphrey

Alex studied film at the University of Kent and went on to work for Universal Pictures in their Post Room gaining an inside look at the movie industry from the very bottom. Constantly writing reviews in everything from local magazines to Hip Hop sites Alex honed his critical skills even spending a brief period as a restaurant critic. Read more

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