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Nicholas Brendon

Nicholas Brendon - ’Unholy’ Movie Script - Creature-corner.com Review - Spoilers

By Dave Dreher

Tuesday 15 February 2005, by Webmaster

General Horror Reader and fan of the site DB got a look at the script for the now lensing film UNHOLY and was kind enough to sit down and write a review of what he saw. UNHOLY you will remember stars Adrienne Barbeau and Nicholas "Xander from Buffy" Brendon.

Here is what DB has to say about the script:

Hi there, guys. This is my first time writing to the site, but I’ve been an avid reader ever since I found out about it while I was working at a theater in Long Island. The reason why I’m writing to you now is to give you my own take on the script of "Unholy", an indie horror film I’m PA’ing on which is shooting right now in the Queens and Staten Island area.

You may have already heard about this production, as it stars genre queen Adrienne Barbeau and Nicholas "Xander from Buffy" Brendon. What you might not know is that this is a genuinely creepy script where the scares come from real tension, not from cheap jumpcuts. It is unlike any horror script I have read in that it refuses to keep the reader comfortable. Just when you get that feeling you know where it’s going, it really does pull the rug out from under you. This is the kind of thing M. Night Shyamalan hasn’t been able to do effectively since "The Sixth Sense."

I should mention right now that the script is not going to satisfy everyone the way it worked on me. I feel as though the script holds back the main "bad guy" too much, and the ending can be a bit confusing when you first read it. Brendon’s role, Lucas, is a real stretch for him and it will be interesting to see how it looks when the whole thing is cut together.

The story opens with the best opening sequence in a horror script since the original "Scream", and goes right into the plot, which is about a suicide that leads a mother and son on an investigation that leads them on the trail of an actual urban myth familiar to people from that area of New Jersey. I won’t get into any more of the plot details, as the surprises come fast and furious once the script gets moving.

(Of course, the squeamish should stay away. My girlfriend told me it freaked her out too much and couldn’t finish it.)

There are a number of set pieces that stand out, including the aforementioned opening sequence - which mostly takes place in a cellar - and a great scene where Barbeau’s character is terrorized both physically and psychologically by a couple of creepy children. I was disappointed by the lack of gore, being a Romero devotee from way back, but most of the scares here are psychological. Also, if you’re not a fan of suicides, watch out, because there’s three of them in the script, which might be a bit much for some.

Personally, I might have gone another way with the ending, but there’s enough good stuff in there to make you not worry about the minor flaws. I think, if done properly, this movie could be the next big indie horror sensation, along the lines of "Cabin Fever", "The Blair Witch Project" and other great modern genre flicks.

Someone sent me the first 14 pages of the script and I have been kicking around posting them and letting you check it out for yourself. I am attempting to get permission to do just that and will keep you informed if I can post it for you.