tek's rating:

Treevenge (16:00)
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This was made in 2008, but I didn't see it until 2014. It was directed by Jason Eisener, the year after he made the fake trailer "Hobo with a Shotgun," which played in some theaters before Grindhouse. Anyway, "Treevenge" is itself a grindhouse-style short film. It won a bunch of awards, and I think it was pretty good... better than my rating would suggest. But I'm not a huge fan of grindhouse movies to begin with, and it's always hard to get into any kind of short film, unless it's both really exceptional and right up my alley. So I think if you are a grindhouse fan, you should definitely like this movie a lot more than I did, but even I could recognize that it's pretty fun. It is also pretty gruesome, in the final scenes. So if you can't stand gore, this is not for you.

Anyway, it begins with some guys cutting down trees to sell for Christmas. And they act like homicidal maniacs while doing so. Plus, the trees are talking in some kind of tree language that sounds like Jawas or Ewoks or something. (Viewers can read subtitles for what they're saying, but I didn't get the sense that the people could even hear the trees, let alone understand them.) So... we can see that the trees are terrified and hurt and confused by the horror that has befallen them, of which the humans are completely unaware. And then we see trees in like two or three different homes, the main one being a cheerful family of four. (The father is played by Jonathan Torrens, whom I used to watch in the early 90s as one of the hosts of the Canadian show Street Cents.) On Christmas morning, the trees attack. First in the homes we'd already seen, then outside, there are trees killing people everywhere.

I can't help wondering why, if they were capable of moving, they didn't resist in the first place, but whatever. This isn't a genre where logic is important. What's important is the gore, the intentionally subpar production values, and the dark humor inherent in the redonkulousness of it all. (Also, it kind of makes you think about what trees might think of Christmas. I guess.)

Christmas shorts index