• The Darkened Corridor

Antler, 2020 horror movie - first thoughts

If 2019 wasn’t del Toro enough for you enough already, he’s back - this time in the producer's chair for the upcoming horror film Antlers. With an as yet undecided release date in 2020, we’ll have to wait a little while still to see the finished piece, but we have this week been treated to a glimpse into what looks like a very bloody world.

Antlers is directed by Scott Cooper of Hostiles (2017), and Crazy Heart (2009) fame, and written by C. Henry Chaisson, and Nick Antosca. There isn’t a lot of information available at the moment directly relating to the plot of the film, we do know it is based on a short story by Antosca titled “The Quiet Boy”, which is available to read in full online. I would recommend that you do, either before or after watching the film when it releases, as it is truly captivating.

Assuming at least some similarities between “The Quiet Boy” and Antlers - we’re in for a treat. It’s about a teacher in an impoverished area of the US, who notices a child in her class, who in turn has a dark secret. The story that unfolds strikes me as such an original, horrific concept, that I would already book my tickets to see it now if I could.

After reading the short story, the monster which we can see right at the end of the trailer is given a lot more context. I’m not going to spoil anything here, but from the dimly lit shape, it looks like they have done a good job of putting the idea from “the Quiet Boy” onto the screen.

My only caution, having read the short story which Antlers is based on, is that we obviously have no idea what the extra parts are going to be, in order to make it feature length. I notice in the casting that the main character, Julia Meadows - played by Keri Russell, has a second actor playing her younger self - Kaytelin Peterson. The character’s history formed only a small part of “the Quiet Boy”, so the direction this will take will be entirely new as a result. Obviously, we’ll have to wait to make a judgement on how successfully it is done, but I for one hope it doesn’t end up being one of those “fate and destiny” type plots, where the main character seems to lack any actual agency, with all the stars aligning to get them into that situation.

Regardless, I remain both optimistic and excited for the release of Antlers, and I can’t wait for any news which emerges until that day.

You can watch the trailer here, and as always let me know what you think of it over on twitter!

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures / Scott Cooper et al.