The Gate (2011)

the-gate-0021Director Matt Westrup is the latest indie success story as his 2011 directed short film “The Gate” is being turned in to a feature length film by Wayfare studios. As a short film it’s a product of a premise that definitely could benefit from a feature length treatment, because Westrup inadvertently serves up so much story for us and throws so many questions in the air, that eleven minutes just isn’t enough to keep us satisfied.

Not that it’s a flaw for the film, it’s just Westrup’s film has potential to be a brilliant Frankenstein tale about the dangers of the pharmaceutical industry in the twenty first century, and with the proper writing and respect, it could very well be one of the most socially relevant pieces of science fiction ever made. “The Gate” features special effects and creature effects that are absolutely startling. Westrup delivers the glimpses at our creature in limited portions which helps to keep the creature as a whole very menacing and horrific.

“The Gate” is set in the UK where a government official is reporting on an incident that took place in the city area where an unknown monster began wreaking havoc. Upon witnessing the debacle, we get a glimpse at some harrowing imagery including the creature’s full strength and form and the lengths the government will go through to ensure the secrecy of this attack. Clearly something is up as the committee interviewing about the incident explores the creature was a product of experimental pharmaceuticals that the individual bought online and thanks to accidental hormonal interactions, the person transformed in to the monster.

Worse is that there are files with numerous other people who prescribed to the same hormonal therapy and now the government will have to work to find them and ensure the city isn’t overrun by mutants. “The Gate” transcends the formula of the short film and is just teeming with ambition and rich narrative that will hopefully guarantee a wonderful feature film. Matt Westrup has created a really entertaining and original science gone wrong film that allows a forum to explore the dangers of unregulated pharmaceuticals simultaneously. I look forward to exploring what can be produced from this rich and sharp short science fiction monster movie. With great writing and a good expansion of the narrative, we could be in store for the next great modern science fiction horror film.