Tuesday 22 June 2021

Dark Horror Short Review: Snore

Dark Horror Short Review: Snore

Review By Casey Douglass


Human characters in horror films tend to be weak and vulnerable, but when you swap humans for soft, fuzzy Muppet-style puppets, you open up a whole new world of strangeness. Snore is a splatstick horror comedy from Luther Bhogal-Jones, who, after playing with creatures of the night in Goodnight, Halloween, has inserted two hapless puppets into a dangerous situation.

Failed businesswoman Karen and her spineless assistant and squeeze Callum, end up having to stay in a dilapidated half-way house. In the darkness of the night, whilst sharing the tiny bed, they hear a strange sound. This sound comes from a sinister, small, pig-like creature called the Jip. What then ensues is a desperate battle between the luckless puppets and the armour-clad micro-porker. Blood is spilled, screams are uncorked and designer man-bags are ruined.


The first thing that really impressed me in the film was the physicality of the puppets. Just after Karen and Callum wake and begin searching the room, the detritus under the bed is pulled out and the bed is moved. Callum is the beast of burden throughout this period, his trembling body and pained grunts and heaves seeming entirely believable.


After Callum’s non-euphemistic bed gymnastics, we enter what I think I might call the “Ominous Red” phase of the film. The first manifestation of this is an eerie red glow emanating from behind a stack of boxes. The soundtrack pulses and throbs with threat. Callum trembles and mumbles as he peers through the gap. Something rushes past. He lifts some of the boxes and “a little creature” emerges on the other side. The Jip is now in play, and if you ever wondered if a puppet can bleed, you’ll get your answer watching Snore.


The Jip itself is played by a man in a suit, with some green-screen trickery used to create the battle between itself and the puppets. In a Q&A about Snore, one of the inspirations mentioned was the film of Steven King’s anthology Cat’s Eye, where a young Drew Barrymore is terrorized by a small evil puppet. Snore is a fun, tongue-in-cheek reversal of this human vs puppet dynamic.

I went into Snore without any real expectations and came away really impressed with the atmosphere and execution of the film. The puppets and the Jip are great, especially how they interact with the world and each other. The lighting and score make it feel like a true horror, and the way that it plays out in ten short minutes felt satisfying to me. If you like puppets in dire situations, and films that don’t take themselves too seriously, head over to the YouTube link below to give it a watch, I’d say it’s well worth your time.

Film Title:

Online Release: 31 May 2021

Length: 10 minutes 24 seconds

Link to View: YouTube


Karen – Sarah Williams, Callum – Nick Holiday, Frances – Andrew Calverley


Director – Luther Bhogal-Jones

Writers – Luther Bhogal-Jones and Gabrielle Wright

Producer – Luther Bhogal-Jones/ Faster Productions with financial assistance from Adur and Worthing Trust

Director of Photography – Anthony Gurner

Production Design/ Props – Jenny Ray

Production Assistants – Sam Elfer, Jim Faulkner, Mark Tew, Simon Messingham, Christopher Regan, Peter Regan

Editor – Luther Bhogal-Jones

Grade – Anthony Gurner

Mouse Hole CGI FX – Jason Arber c/o Phantom Limb

Title Animation/ VFX Comping – Nick Gripton

Music – Mikolaj Holowko

Sound Design and Mixing – Alyn Sclosa c/o Sclosa Post Audio

Puppets designed by Garry Robson

Puppets created by Charlotte Regan

With thanks to Peter Regan, Arna Maria Kristjansdottir, Harriet Lansodwn

Jip creature designed by Garry Robson

Jip miniature/ creature costume and performance by Jean-Daniel Byrne

With thanks to The Artpothecary, Brighton