The Friday Horror Short 4, 2AM: The Smiling Man

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Summary: A short horror film that punches up a true story from Reddit. Taps into the weird encounters that happen to us all that wander around too late at night.

BLOT: (03 Jan 2014 - 09:20:37 PM)

The Friday Horror Short 4, 2AM: The Smiling Man

I showed this to the wife and some friends on New Year's Eve, so I figure I'd make it my next featured short. "2AM: The Smiling Man has the interesting pedigree of being based on a true story [as far as evidence goes] that was posted to Reddit about a year ago. I heard it via the YogPod, and it was definitely creepy. As a person who got out and walked around late at night in his younger days, including in some bad neighborhoods, I can appreciate the weirdness of the original. I'm not saying it is 100% factual, and probably was beefed up a little, as most stories are, but having seen things like people standing perfectly still on the edge of empty roads and people eating from trashcans, I can believe that core weird was as portrayed. Something about the exaggerated steps is creepy enough that, as a long time horror fan, I really hope that part, at least, is true-as-told.

What Michael Evens did with the short was to take it a little bit out of reality and put it a little bit into a horror movie. It kills a degree of the natural feeling of the original, but that's ok. It is still effective. Even adds a tad bit of punch to the end. Not 100% needed, it is a bit of a fun gotcha.

As for my favorite weird "out walking" story, or one of them... One afternoon I was walking to work, this would have been when I still worked nights. In front of me, on down the street, I could see someone that was the same rough build as me, same rough height. Big guy, tallish. Had my same hair. Was dressed really close to what I was then wearing. The one twist was that as I was walking towards him, he was walking backwards towards me. I just kept going, figuring if this was some sort of Reverse-Doug come to eat my face, that I should probably get it over with, and of course, spoilers, it turned out to be a guy of similar build and dress-sense walking backwards. I think he was doing it to sort of stretch out some muscles, because he had a bit of a sheen of sweat going. Still, for a moment, it was kind of weird.

Friday Horror Short


Written by Doug Bolden

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