Hey there, creeps! I’ve been following the history of the new flick THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY from fright maestro Pearry Teo (STRANGE BLOOD) for quite some time now, so when I caught wind the flick was set to be released, I had to check it out post-haste… and I did! So here’s my review, followed by a recent jaw sesh I had with ol’ P.T. himself!
THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY
• RELEASE DATE: Available in Theaters on May 13th, on VOD and iTunes on May 17th
• WRITTEN BY: Josh Nadler, Pearry Teo (Based on the comic by Everette Hartsoe)
• DIRECTED BY: Pearry Teo
• STARRING: Ethan Peck, India Eisley, Natalie Hall
When Thomas (Peck), a victim of sleep paralysis and bizarre nightmares featuring Briar Rose (Eisley) a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty, randomly inherits a bizarre mansion from an uncle he has never met, things go from crazy to really bats—t insane in like a freakin’ nanosecond. Ya see, ol’ T-dog gives SB a smooch and wakes her up in the dream world, which royally pisses off a monster that leaves a sticky gift (get your head out of the gutter, it’s like some sort of slime… dammit…) on Tom that starts to make him feel like a bag of smashed asses in the real world. Before long, Thomas joins forces with a plucky young woman investigating her brother’s disappearance in the mansion. What follows is a diabolical dervish of living mannequins, secret passages leading to arcane artifacts, and ancient curses.
THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY is exactly the type of fright flick that gets my terror trousers all tight. Dark fairy tale elements swirl and mesh with gothic tropes, nightmare realms are traversed, dusty mansions are explored, and monsters are battled, all while unraveling ancient mysteries. If that sounds like more than what can fit within a scant 86 minute run-time, I would understand your fears; but let me assure you, die-rector/co-writer Teo is up to the task. As the film flashes by at a brisk pace, it displays solid world building and a great mythology that’s a ton o’ fun to experience.
I suppose if there is a negative, it’s that if you don’t exactly jive with fairy tales or dream logic, this may be a bit of a tough sell for you at first; but die-rector Teo has a good eye (two of them in fact) and fills every frame with great visuals and compositions, not to enough mention monsters, mayhem, and mood that I think every fan of the outré will find something to embrace.
THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY is one hell of a bedtime story: nightmarish, bizarre and completely F’n awesome! If you dig on Del Toro or Barker, this is the flick for you!
And now, let’s welcome THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY‘s die-rector, the multi-talented all-around cool ass dude Pearry Teo to the Crypt o’ XIII!
Famous Monsters. THE CURSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTY is just the type of flick I freakin’ love — dark fairy tale images meshed with Gothic thriller elements. Give us the low down on how the film came to be!
Pearry Teo. I have been wanting to work with [comic creator Hartsoe] Everette for the longest time, ever since he did the Razor comics. I learnt about him from the Razor / The Crow crossover, and as a lot of people know, I’m a huge fan of the Crow (Got a tattoo on my back!). When we were discussing projects, this was something I felt that could be made into a movie. So together, we came up with the concepts; I put together a package and introduced it to Bleiberg Entertainment who quickly picked up the chance to produce it. I’m very blessed that Ehud Bleiberg believes in this project. Truly, without him… this is all just ideas with me and Everette.
FM. How difficult was it to realize the highly stylized worlds of the film?
PT. The conceptual phase was very difficult. That is because I have very little reference material to work with. Getting people to see my vision required many different source materials that we pore through day and night. But once the collective crew understood my vision, it was a matter of cultivating to their own unique sense of art while making sure that the overall vibe, feel, and artistic integrity remains. I had a great crew and a great producer that really stood through with it till the end. Because an ambitious film like this requires lots and lots of passion. Without it, you’ll be burned out in a few days and we had a year’s of work ahead of us. For that, I’m very blessed.
FM. Are there any plans to revisit the world of CURSE in the future?
PT. Yes! Ehud Bleiberg and the team at XLrator have been in excited discussions about the future of SLEEPING BEAUTY since we obviously have tons of material to work with in relation to the comics. But that is dependent on the reception of the public. It’s up to the audience if they want an original take of a classic tale or if they want to stick to the same formula we see in superhero / fairy tale remakes today.
FM. A project of yours I’m VERY interested to see is PALE HORSE. Can you give us any info on how that flick is comin’ along?
PT. I wish I knew myself! [laughs]
FM. Dammit, I was hopin’ you’d say it was done and I could watch it right now! Anyway, what’s up next?
PT. I am producing a film called STASIS, a science fiction film with a new take on the time travel sub-genre. For my directing plans, I have been exploring using virtual reality as a tool for new storytelling methods.
FM. That sounds rad-ass! Please keep us posted on how that comes along; and remember, the ol’ Crypt door is always open for ya!