After writer-director Ti West's throwback horror film The House of the Devil became a modest critical and commercial hit last year, it occurred to me that there were probably a lot of people who didn't know about his earlier work. Because I was one of them, I tracked down copies of his two previous efforts, Trigger Man and The Roost, and figured I'd check them out sooner or later. After attending last week's SXSW "Directing the Dead" panel which Cinematical's own Scott Weinberg moderated and West participated in, it seemed appropriate that I watch them sooner, perhaps for work as much as pleasure.
Because one of the limitations of this article series is that the films covered must be at least five years old, however, The Roost was West's only eligible film, which is why it, rather than his more recent Trigger Man, is the subject of this week's "Shelf Life." And while this hardly seems like a film that many will be visiting for more than the first time, it seemed a good opportunity to likewise immerse myself in the film with the pure benefit of hindsight, not to mention a growing affection for West's films in general, in the process of poring over this fledgling effort.