Horror Favourites – Patrick Picard

First-time feature director Patrick Picard brings a fresh take to one of the best-known stories from the master of mystery and the macabre, Edgar Allan Poe’s The Fall of the House of Usher, in his new slow-burner horror-thriller The Bloodhound, a hauntingly atmospheric tale described by The Hollywood News as “an impressively stylish and intellectual debut”.

Francis (Liam Aiken, A Series of Unfortunate Events), a dispossessed young man, is summoned to the secluded home of his wealthy childhood friend, JP Luret (Joe Adler, The Maze Runner), who is suffering from a mysterious affliction. Upon his arrival, Francis realises that JP and his ethereal twin sister Vivian (Annalise Basso, Ouija: Origin of Evil) are the sole surviving members of the privileged Luret family, whose legacy has been one of depression and self-destruction, and the only occupants of their family estate. As the old friends attempt to reconnect, a number of inexplicable incidents begin to occur within the house, and Francis finds himself drawn into a world of malaise and despair, where an act of betrayal might provide his only way out…

From Leal Naim and Thomas R. Burke, producers of The Endless and Synchronic, and featuring some remarkable performances from its trio of lead actors, The Bloodhound leads you on a journey exploring themes that are as relevant to today as ever before, such as the yearning for emotional connection, the perils of social isolation and the fragility of mental health.

Below Patrick Picard discusses his favorite horror film:

“When I was at the AFI, a mentor of mine, Peter Markham, lent me a copy of an ostensible “ghost story” called Whistle and I’ll Come To You— a forty-five minute omnibus film made for the BBC in the sixties. I got a strange feeling immediately when Peter handed me the disk. It was as if an old bookstore owner had shown me to a back room and handed me a dusty first-edition that no one ever touched but that had a dark power.

The story goes: a cynical philosophy professor takes a solo-holiday at a seaside English village where there’s not much more than the b&b, the sea, and an old graveyard. On a meandering walk, he discovers a bone-flute sticking out from the eroding ground next to a crumbling grave. He takes the flute back to his room and discovers that it’s inscribed with the latin words “Quis est iste qui venit” (“Who is this who is coming?”). The professor decides to blow the whistle and… I’ll leave it there.

On the surface, Whistle and I’ll Come to You might not seem that frightening. But there’s something about the silence in the film that is really disturbing and the slow pace makes it work even better. It’s got a lot of humor for sure, the writing is oddly beautiful, and the performance by Michael Hordern is arguably Peter Sellers-level. But by the time I got to the end, my hairs actually stood up! I mean actually! I wrote Peter directly after watching to tell him that it might in fact be the scariest thing I’ve ever seen. Peter told me he once ran into the director, Jonathan Miller, at the BBC and immediately began raving about Whistle and I’ll Come to You. Miller blurted “that’s all anyone ever wants to talk about!”. No duh.”

The Bloodhound is out now on ARROW. Start your 30 day free trial now: https://bit.ly/AVCUK

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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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