(Online screener version)
Directed by Corey Norman
Written by Haley Norman
Stars: Anne Bobby, Andrew Lyndaker, Dan Domingues, Beth Sommerville
Many thanks to director Corey Norman for asking me to check out his new horror short Suffer the Little Children which is based on the short story by Stephen King (available as part of the Nightmares and Dreamscapes anthology).
This is a short that will stick with you for some time (if you have a soul) and I have to confess that while I found it brilliantly realised by Corey and Haley Norman, there were moments I wanted to look away!
This is a difficult one to review in the sense I don't want to give anything away for those who are unfamiliar with the short story and so I will leave it at a brief summary. Anne Bobby who starred in the fantastic Nightbreed from the macabre Clive Barker plays a stressed school teacher who suspects something is horribly wrong with the children in her class. After a horrifying encounter with one of her pupils - a brilliantly eerie performance by Andrew Lyndaker - Anne's character Miss Sidley ends up on sick leave. When she returns however she has a dark plan to end the evils she is certain have taken hold of the school.
What happens next is jaw dropping - the climax of this short is horrible yes but also extremely well executed and acted. The main question that soon remains is what is really going on at this school?
There is a nice streak of ambiguity in Suffer the Little Children but do not let that put you off - I think it only adds to an effective film which really makes you think and reassess what you have just watched. Hats off to the Normans for an excellent and unsettling horror short which deserves to be seen by a wider audience.