I got an itch to re-watch a film that I enjoyed at Fantastic Fest 3 back in 2007, Christoffer Boe's dark drama Offscreen. It was a gut-wrenching experience, an emotionally raw journey that ends in the darkest place that the film could possibly end. I was impressed by Boe's skill as a filmmaker, and I thought the cast was impeccable. It's really a stand-out indie horror film. The bad news? I'll probably never get to see it again.

That's the blessing and the curse of film festivals. You get to see things you'd never get to see otherwise, and, sometimes, you'll never get another chance at all. Offscreen is Danish, accessible enough for American audiences, but there's no Region 1 DVD and no talk of U.S. distribution. At this point, there probably won't ever be.

That's a real shame. There are a lot of horror fans that would like something like Offscreen; people who don't demand typical scares, but relish uncomfortable situations that play out without a single glimmer of hope. I'm no sicko (I'm about as square a horror fan as they come, actually), but, done right, there's a real skill involved in making an audience squirm through well-staged emotional pain and suffering. Offscreen excels at that. Yes, It's too bad I'll most likely never see Offscreen again (I'm not a big enough foreign film collector to go all out on an all-region DVD player); It's even more unfortunate that it wasn't seen by a wider audience.

categories Horror