The latest installment of Screen Crusades features a conversation with actress Zoe Graham of the Shudder anthology film, Scare Package.
The premise of the flick centers on Chad Buckley, a horror aficionado and overseer of a fledgling video store. When a new job applicant make their way into the store, Chad and his only regular customer Sam, set out to teach the newb the rules of the genre.
The series of vignettes features some seven different directors in Emily Hagins (My Sucky Teen Romance), Chris McInroy (Death Metal), Noah Segan (Knives Out), Courtney and Hillary Andujar (production design on The Wind), Anthony Cousins (The Bloody Ballad of Squirt Reynolds), Baron Vaughn (“Grace and Frankie”) and Koontz (The Pale Door) who all co-wrote the film with Frank Garcia-Hejl (“Ramsey Has a Time Machine”), Ben Fee (Missio: I See You) and John Karsko (After Dark).
Appropriately enough, Downey and Graham begin their discussion recalling the nostalgia of the video store. For Graham, her neighborhood video rental store only recently closed due to the pandemic. In discussing the film, there is a subtle pang of mourning in no longer being able to walk into a place full of physical movies. Playing a role in a film with such a familiar, comforting setting, evoked fond memories of good times.
As for the genre itself, Graham confides that she really didn't have the stomach for the category. Though she is gradually getting more acquainted, working on Scare Package has resulted in a new appreciate for the genre. Approaching the style with a admiration for cinema's ability to create dialogue and highlight social issues, Graham expressed that horror is certainly moving into that direction in becoming a much more sophisticated section of the medium.
With regards to the film, Graham explains that same reverence is what allows the writers in Aaron B. Koontz and Cameron Burns to be able to poke fun at some of the familiar cliches. Their profound enthusiasm for the category gives them a unique vantage point that allows them to intelligently pick apart the tropes in a way that comes from a passionate place.
Drawing parallels with classics of the genre like Scream, Scare Package functions similarly in repurposing the truisms of horror to tell add a new, unexpected dynamic to the genre and tell a compelling story at the same time.
Watch the latest episode of Screen Crusades with Ryan J. Downey and special guest, Zoe Graham of Scare Package.
Scare Package arrives on Shudder video on-demand, Digital HD, DVD and Blu-ray on October 20, 2020. Watch the trailer below.