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REVIEW – In2ruders (2018) – Trailblazer

REVIEW – In2ruders (2018) – Trailblazer

In2ruders is a new 23 minute psychological horror / thriller short film by award winning filmmaker Naeem Mahmood which shows the dark side of the music industry. Starring a mixed cast of recognizable celebrities including models Caprice and Ricki Hall, actors Megan Burns (28 Days Later) and Samuel Anderson (Doctor Who) and Spandau Ballet singer Tony Hadley; In2ruders shows a dark and twisted depiction of the music business.

An independent musician battles against a music company (NWR) who are trying to tie her down on a contract and own her ‘soul’. The corporation lead by the sexy yet sinister CEO (Caprice) will stop at nothing to get what they want, no matter how much mental and physical abuse they need to dish out in the process. The NWR are determined to stalk, blackmail, capture and torture their victims until they sign their life away on the dotted line. The artist tries her best to hide from the NWR but they eventually get their hands on her and put her through unimaginable torment. It is all very ‘real’, the violence is very convincing and hard to watch at times but it does a great job of emphasising the struggle of remaining ‘independent’.

This short film is very honest, direct, and hard hitting right from the offset. It shows some aspects of the glitz and glory of fame but focuses mainly on presenting another side which hasn’t really been exposed to us in such brutality. On paper, at first glance the casting may look like a mishmash of ‘known faces’ but they all work extremely well in this film and it gives the film a feeling of authenticity given their first hand experience of working in showbiz. There are strong performances from the whole cast, however Caprice in particular puts in a standout performance as the villain, one which may land her more similar roles in the future. While the movie is far fetched in its concepts, there seems to be a high degree of truthful insight into what actually goes on in real life. This is the type of film that the music industry doesn’t want you to see, but you owe it to yourself to see another side of what actually goes on albeit it acts as a metaphor. At only 23 minutes, you still feel like you are watching an uncut movie as nothing is watered down or taken out with the exploitation scenes being pro-longed and full-on.

There is no doubt that In2ruders is a very thought provoking film with a lot of great ideas, despite its short length it does more than enough to raise questions in your mind and as its delivery is concise. There is no filler to be found here, the film shows the scarring effects of corporate greed and power on creative artists who are desperate for money and fame but do not want to ‘sell their soul’. In2ruders shows how quickly a dream can transform into a nightmare. The soundtrack by Bloom Twins (produced by Nick Rhodes from Duran Duran) is solid and fits in well with the slick presentation and complements the superb use of lighting.

In2ruders, despite its low budget, is a slick and stylish film which draws in a lot of influences and experimental camera techniques to provide a distinctly unique psychological thriller which will drop your jaw to the floor. The film is shot like a movie and a music video all rolled into one, it weaves in and out of its own consciousness and it is as distressing as it is mesmerising. The production values are high and it has the look and feel of a big budget release with no flaws. This is a brave portrayal of what goes on behind the glitz and glamour of the music industry and shows the horrors within. In a world where freedom of speech is controlled by the media, this is ‘gold’.

***** (5/5)


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