Every town has its traditions. For New Caney, Texas, those traditions include a Halloween-set “horror show” that encourages citizens to dress up in their most chilling holiday attire for…well, we’re guessing not just a fun, family-friendly time with neighbors. Sonny Mallhi’s newest film — and his second produced by indie horror powerhouse Blumhouse Productions — is set in New Caney during just such a time, and the film’s first teaser trailer makes it clear that this holiday will be one many will want to forget.
“Hurt” will premiere at Fantasia Fest, one of the world’s premiere genre festivals, on Thursday, July 26, and its official festival synopsis tantalizingly teases at what’s to come. “Lost in an atmosphere that is as disturbing and brutal as it is real, Mallhi’s characters evolve in a maze of confusion, anxiety and violence. The collective psychosis of American culture is an inescapable horror film, a waking nightmare. Its story transcends those of fear’s mascots Jason, Freddy and Michael. Their masks are icons, familiar and reassuring faces. But what about those who helplessly wear the mask of normalcy while desperately fighting the monster of trauma within?”
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The film stars first-time film actress Emily Van Raay as Rose, with supporting turns from Andrew Creer, Bradley Hamilton, Stephanie Moran, and Natalie Olivia Clarke.
The film is Mallhi’s third, following his debut “Anguish” and his other Blumhouse joint, “Family Blood,” which was released earlier this year (and is now available on Netflix). Before hopping behind the camera, Mallhi produced films, including “The Strangers,” 2012’s “House at the End of the Street,” and “The Roommate” (plus, amusingly enough, the Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock romance “The Lake House,” which is a bit of a horror film in its own way).
Check out IndieWire’s exclusive trailer below, plus the film’s first poster.