Countdown (Nattawat Poonpiriya, Thailand: 2012)

Three young Thai students living in New York decide to celebrate the countdown to the New Year by calling in the services of their local friendly drug dealer. However the drug dealer turns out to be not so friendly, and transforms into a bible thumping psychotic killer who may or may not be Jesus – a particularly vengeful one it should be noted – after whom he is ‘aptly’ named.

A refreshing change from the traditional ghost narratives that Thailand churns out, Countdown owes much of its impact to the suitably demented performance of David Asavanond as the eponymous Jesus, who also appeared in the original short on which Countdown is based. A hybrid home invasion/teen slasher film, Countdown goes for the cinematic jugular only, unfortunately, to sanitize the narrative with a coda of religious redemption. However this does not detract significantly from what is an enjoyable ride, and the score alone warrants an excursion to the cinema rather than waiting to see it on DVD or online.

Countdown is showing as part of the Terror Cotta Horror Night, in association with Film 4 Fright Fest, at the Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square, London, on 7th June 2013. Tickets can be booked direct from the Prince Charles Cinema

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