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Review: Wesley Alley’s Good Girl (A Hitchcockian Romance Thriller)

Wesley Alley is quickly becoming one of my favorite directors. When he’s not working behind-the-scenes on Hollywood blockbusters, he’s energizing the world of short films with incredible titles like Sockmonster and now Good Girl. Alley’s writing is nothing short of genius, and he always finds ways to incorporate thrills, drama, and emotional tugs into his dark and twisted tales of terror. That same tactic is on full display in Good Girl, a dark thriller that follows a romantic, home dinner date between a married couple celebrating their ten year anniversary. Once the clock strikes midnight, though, the fairy-tale turns into a nightmare that’s both calculated and menacing. Produced by Alley, Darren Lynn Bousman, Amanda Markowotz, Bradley Fowler and Victoria Matlock, Good Girl is a Hitchcockian thriller with tangible sexuality, suspense and sadism. Look for it at a film festival near you in the following months!

Presented by Three Tales Productions and Darren Lynn Bousman, Good Girl is off-putting (in a good way) from the start. As the viewer, it’s quite clear that something is wrong, but you don’t know what. It’s visible in the actors body language, and the atmosphere that builds at a mounting pace. Literally. Zack Ward (Resident Evil: Apocalypse) as Charlie and Amanda Markowitz (Patchwork) as Helen have real chemistry together on set. They appear to be enjoying their dinner, but subtle signs point to disaster. Even the camera work, that’s almost soap opera-esque in nature for the first half of this short film, was meant to convey some sort of disorientation. Props to cinematographer Ryan Patrick McCoy, editor Derek Larsen, co-writer Bradley Fowler, and the director, Wesley Alley, for creating one of the most well-rounded atmospheres that I’ve seen in independent horror this year. The style, the camera and the acting all convey the same thing – look for trouble. Because it’s here. It’s just hiding.

Now, I’m sure you’re wondering what the trouble is, and what terror awaits the married couple. Well, I can’t tell you that. That would take away from the joy of seeing Good Girl yourself when it hits film festivals later this year. I will tell you, though, that from the moment I saw the opening shot of the red rose, I knew this was going to be an amazing, ten minute short film. And I was right! It’s a little low on the horror scale until the end, but I can certainly appreciate the Hitchcockian suspense and ominous tone that’s prevalent throughout the entire mini-movie. Plus, the foley and total run time were absolutely on point. Audio and pace are key components, folks. Wesley Alley knocked it out of the park, or old Victorian dining room in this case, with Good Girl…a two-faced love story and a mind game of epic proportions. No complaints here what-so-ever. Final Score: 8.5 out of 10.

Written by Michael Therkelsen

(Senior Editor)