Got another one coming in hot, Gorehounds! Hot like the arterial spray of blood across one’s face… or maybe nothing like that, actually, now that I’m looking at it. Stop distracting me, we need to stay on track. The destination of the said treacherous track is Matty Muller’s first horror feature — Taboo!

Taboo 1 - 'Taboo': Upcoming Horror Film Will Test Your Limits Kickstarter [Giallo Julian's Indie Spotlight]

Taboo tells the story of three juvenile criminals, Charity, Charlotte and Michelle who are given one last chance at redemption. They are sent on a team-building course in a forest with their youth worker, Miss White. Whilst on the course, the group learns that they are not alone. The situation goes from bad to worse, and their trip becomes a matter of life and death.”

On the film, Muller stated:

Taboo is a special film. We were keen to avoid the cliches that plague so much horror. So the girls aren’t sexual deviants, they don’t run and fall wearing skimpy outfits and, critically, there are no jumpscares. The film is much more eerie and unsettling. It is more akin to Mark O’Brien’s The Righteous with a slow burn as opposed to an outright gorefest.”

Sounds like this flick is going to be all about “mood” and “atmosphere”. While I do love my outright gorefests, I can appreciate a good atmospheric horror jaunt, so color me intrigued!

Muller also said:

“We wanted a positive representation of females in the genre so it’s an all-female cast. They are all strong, well-defined characters in their own right. I personally find that I can write for actresses better than I can for actors.”

Now you’re speaking my language, Muller. Strong, well-defined female leads? I’m in! Making up said the all-female cast is Jenna Rodway, Katie Cannon, Gabi Kerr, Colleen Webb, and Sarah Hadwood.

Taking on the SFX is Max Van Der Banks, who’s worked on such flicks as The Dead, The Dead 2: India, and Born of Hope. The Dead is a personal favorite zombie movie of mine, so that’s particularly exciting! The FX in that movie were primo supremo — chef’s kiss!

Muller is also planning to use numerous techniques to create a unique storytelling experience. Despite being mainly shot in a handheld documentary-style format, it’s been stressed that it’s not intended to be a found-footage flick:

“Films that use the found-footage trope all suffer from the same problems. Nauseating camera movement and screaming at something off-camera. Taboo will be more cinéma vérité in that we observe, but don’t necessarily interact.”

There was a time I’d probably agree with Muller about found-footage, but several creators have been working hard to sway me to the sub-genre. Have to say, it’s working! Still, even with all the excellent work being done, the genre does have a reputation – deserved or not is definitely in the shaky and yes, sometimes nauseating viewfinder of the beholder. It makes sense Muller and his team would take such a perspective into account.

Muller also mentioned some influences for the film:

“At film school, I discovered Giallo and Euro Horror. There will be a few nods to Dario Argento along with other directors I love. There is an entire surreal sequence that is pure Jodorowsky.”

Hm, a nod to Dario Argento, you say? I’m sure my reaction to this is hard to guess — a guy named GIALLO Julian. Couldn’t have gone better if you planned it! Unless…

To fund the feature, Muller turned to Kickstarter, with the film’s campaign running as we speak. You can check it out here and help support the film, if you feel so inclined!

“Kickstarter was the obvious choice for funding. Taboo is such a unique and, at times, surreal horror that traditional funding didn’t seem appropriate. A lot of financiers wanted overly sexualized T&A or more formulaic storytelling. A Japanese company even offered the full budget, but their changes were not suitable. We just can’t compromise what we’re trying to do.”

Muller and his crew plan to release the film on the festival circuit before making the move to digital distribution. As always, as soon as I learn more, you will.

Until next time…

Ciao, friends!

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