Horror Short Review: Real Cool Time (2023)

From writer/director Matthew Packman comes Real Cool Time, a 25-minute horror short that stars Lanae Hyneman, Alice Shen, and Kara Gray.

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The story revolves around a music journalist named Juliya, an obnoxious woman, who needs to complete a series of interviews with Devin Crane, the vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter for Devin Crane and the Ragged Way. Devin has been ducking it and Juliya has hunted her down to a junky apartment, insisting that they do the interview, even though Devin appears to be in no good state to talk.

Juliya is not welcome, but she berates Devin into doing the interview. It goes about as well as you would expect. It’s every interviewer’s nightmare really, as Devin basically gives one-word answers and acts like she wishes she was anywhere else.

Things get heated when Devin refuses to talk about her European tour, and it turns out that Juliya has an agenda. Digging to get the scoop about a series of events that occurred overseas. The memories cause Devon to have a panic attack.

Juliya won’t leave, regardless of Devin’s insistence, and they continue to talk. Devin slowly opening up and revealing the truth of what happened. A truth that is far more terrifying and bloody than Juliya could ever imagine.

This is an excellent short that combines the spirit of punk, rock, and metal with horror. The kind of horror that builds and builds, oozing tension and atmosphere, and leaving you feeling despondent, but satisfied.

A major aspect of what makes Real Cool Time so watchable is how it is shot. The lack of cuts, the off-kilter angles, and the shakes that make it feel like the viewer is in the room with the characters. Another is the fantastic acting, Lanae Hyneman and Alice Shen have amazing chemistry. Then there is the violent and bloody conclusion. It leaves you wanting to see more, and to know more. The sign of a very good horror short, especially one that is 25-minutes long.

Real Cool Time doesn’t have a release date yet, with the plan being for it to get some screenings at festivals this summer. For now, while you wait, check out the trailer below.




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  • 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!

Real Cool Time (2023)
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