Blood in the Snow Film Festival 2022: Rodrigo Gudiño’s ‘The Breach’

It’s a striking opening: a still camera shows a family picnic, people chatting on blankets and lawn chairs, in front of a river and a forest of magnificent fall colours. One of them wanders over to the water’s edge to check out a canoe that’s drifting by, and then she screams. The horror of The Breach has begun. 

This is unfortunate timing for John Hawkins (Allan Hawco), who’s almost done being sheriff of the one-horse town of Lone Crow. In just a few days he’s set to move into big city policing and the career advancement it brings. But now he has a very peculiar crime to deal with before he leaves: the body in the canoe is boneless and appears to have been shredded from the inside. 

There’s some indication that the mess of flesh used to be an eccentric particle physicist who has built a home in the middle of the wilderness, only accessible by boat or floatplane. To get there, John has to use the services of the local bush guide, who happens to be his ex, Meg (Emily Alatalo) Rounding out the crew is coroner Jacob (Wesley French) who is also Meg’s ex. If this seems unlikely, trust me, it’s not: I grew up in a one horse town, and the dating pool is too small not to overlap with all your other social and professional circles. 

When they get to the house, it’s much more decrepit than Meg remembers; rooms lock and unlock themselves independently; and sometimes a loud hum overtakes the entire surrounding area. It’s mysterious, and it doesn’t get any clearer when the scientist Cole Parsons (Adam Kenneth Wilson) and the wife who’s been searching for him, Linda (Natalie Brown) show up. 

It seems that Parsons’ research may have caused a breach between realities, a rift that a person can enter – but they don’t return the same. 

The characters are all fun – the dynamic between the love-triangled three is nice, and Wilson is charmingly creepy. But the real star of the show is the prosthetics team. The body horror and gore is truly remarkable, and includes some very inventive transfigurations.

The landscape is beautiful, the actors are attractive, the horror is cosmic, and the special effects are gruesome: The Breach is a pretty good time. 

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