Horror Movie Review: The Dark Side of the Womb (2017)

One of the things we often criticise in indie horror is how ‘low budget’ is seen as either a badge of honour or an excuse. The reason we’re not so forgiving when we watch a bad indie horror with a low budget is because we’ve seen many others work wonders with barely any money at all.

All it requires is effort. Effort and talent from the crew and cast. These kinds of movies are hard to find but when they come along, they stand out all that more. The Dark Side of the Womb is one such movie that shows what can happen with effort. Although following along with the insane plot is no easy task.

Written and directed by Sam Salerno, The Dark Side of the Womb is wacky, gleefully so from the very moment it begins.

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Mrs. Wænd (Mickey Faerch) is giving birth to twins and while we never see her face, we hear her voice as she pours affection on one and dismisses the other.

The one to receive her love is Justin (Dean Milo) and the one she rejects is Ed (Matt McCarthy). Who both grow up to be very different people. 30 years later, we see that Justin has had enough of his mother’s affections and lies to her to go and meet a girl. At the park he is accosted by some clowns who murder him.

Mrs. Wænd is devastated and takes her anger out on Ed who finally has enough of her rejection and leaves. All straightforward enough so far but hold on, things are about to get weird.

We then meet Linda (Fay Lytle) who is about to give birth to her baby but to the shock of no-one it seems, she ends up birthing a severed head. If that wasn’t bad enough for Linda, her boyfriend Jesse (David Moneymaker) is then killed in an accident.

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Could life get any worse for Linda? Well, yes. As her doctor, Dr. Necrophilus (Art Roberts) comes up with the idea of attaching the severed head from her womb to Jesse’s body. A sort of, brand new boyfriend (Josh Connor).

Still following along?

We’re far from done with the madness of this movie yet as this new hybrid is mentally unstable and Linda ends up leaving him. Then she meets Ed. Both are damaged individuals just looking for a happy and fulfilling relationship. Will they get their chance together?

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The Dark Side of the Womb isn’t the easiest movie to follow along with but by the end it all completes in a satisfying if unusual way. Every bit as indie as you might expect, it has heart, soul and some really graphic moments.

The enjoyment of the film comes from the performances, in particular Matt McCarthy and Josh Conner. The former is incredibly likeable and relatable. The mental and verbal abuse he has suffered throughout his life could have destroyed him yet he hasn’t given up just yet. His relationship with Fay Lytle’s Linda is believable and endearing. While the latter delivers a creepy and disturbing showcase of psychotic behaviour. A lot of his moments are enhanced by a damn good score.

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It has the look of a low budget horror but captured in a way that makes it feel dream-like. This ties perfectly into the insane story being told. Bit by bit, you’ll find yourself drawn deeper into what Sam Salerno has created here.

The Dark Side of the Womb is a wonderful showcase of the inventiveness that comes from indie horror. While also showing that a low-budget is not an excuse for a rubbish movie.


  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!

The Dark Side of the Womb
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