Monsters are special effects, right? Well, Primitive — a new film by Thunderhead Entertainment and director Benjamin Cooper (The Conquered: Curse of the Shaman, The Brink) — takes the somewhat post-modern approach of having an “actual” monster arise from the subconscious mind of a man who makes his living making FX monsters. It is Thunderhead Entertainment‘s “biggest film to date” and is currently in post-production for a limited cinema release later in the year. Reggie Bannister (the Phantasm movies, Bubba Ho-Tep, Last Rites, and the mutated Tasmanian Devil movie Cemetery Gates) headlines the film.
After punching the director on the set of his latest horror picture, special effects makeup artist, Martin Blaine, is compelled to seek anger management therapy. A visit with a hypnotist seems to help, but soon after his session, Martin receives disturbing news. His estranged mother has passed away under mysterious circumstances. Martin returns to Baronville, Pop. 3800, and before long, people begin to drop dead, brutally torn apart by what appears to be a predatory monster. The local Sheriff is convinced Martin is somehow responsible, and Martin himself comes to believe it as all of the victims are connected to him, and all of the attacks correspond with his vivid nightmares. Before long, a man who makes monsters for a living must confront his own inner demon made flesh before it destroys everyone he comes in contact with.
It’s not easy being an FX monster, as Primitive‘s effects man, Tom Devlin, shows as he does his thing:
Bannister plays the hypnotist whose unorthodox therapy inadvertently conjures the monster from Martin’s deep dark id, struggling with his own inner demons — OCD and agoraphobia — as he is faced with the responsibility of helping his tormented patient.
The monster, known as Thanatos, is a rather classic beast, with lots of teeth, claws and hair, and a very poor grasp on anger management. Note that Thanatos — twin brother to Hypnos in Greek mythology — is sometimes used to refer to the Death Drive in post-Freudian thought, complementing “Eros”:
And of course, sooner or later the classic monster-and-maiden moment happens:
Check out the Gallery below for more images.
- Source: Benjamin Cooper; Official website; Dread Central
- Writing: Robert Hood | Research: Avery Guerra