Torched is a 2004 horror short film produced, fx, music, story, and directed by Ryan Nicholson (Famine, Live Feed, Gutterballs 1/2, Hanger, and Star Vehicle). Nicholson is mainly known for his special fx work on such films as Final Destination, Scary Movie, Ghost Rider, The Predator, Deadpool 2, Blair Witch, Reindeer Games, Dreamcatcher, Lake Placid, & many others. He directed his own films for his own company Plotdigger Films while he wasn’t working on those major productions. It was written, edited, and produced by Vince D’Amato (Corpse-O-Rama, The Hard Cut, Hell Hath No Fury, The Valley of the Rats, and Built to Kill). It was produced by Rob Carpenter (Pneuma, Glass. Nutshells, The Renfield Syndrome, Reversed, and Live Feed). It was included in the 2006 horror anthology “Hell Hath No Fury” years later as a segment from Creepy Six Films.
While heading out to work, university hospital nurse Deanna (played by: Michelle Boback from Deus Ex franchise, Destination: Infestation, Day Before Yesterday, and Marisa Romanov) is tased and raped in her apartment elevator by a hooded man wearing a surgical mask with medical gloves. The next day, the traumatized Deanna subdues a burglar who breaks into her apartment using the rapist’s abandoned stun gun. Deanna, convinced the intruder is the same man who raped her, ties the burglar up, strips him down to nothing but his underwear. She tortures him in a variety of gruesome ways. At work, Deanna makes plans to go out with a friend and co-worker named Leanna (played by: Tamara Pender from Human Nature, Darkest Hour, and Hell Hath No Fury). She asks her boss Doctor Tyson (played by: Daniel Lomas from Hell Hath No Fury and Latchkey’s Lament) to compare the burglar’s blood to a swab of semen she had collected after being raped. She interacts with her neighbor Trevor (played by: Ryan Haneman from Arrow, Live Feed, Road to Victory, and When Life was Good) and they hook up. Things are finally looking good for the unlucky nurse until a trauma brings back everything that just happened to her and she loses her grip on reality. She snaps and takes her anger out on the world. Who will be saved from the vengeful nurse Deanna????
Torched takes advantage of it’s short running time and delivers non stop brutality. This one is pretty simple, a woman gets raped and she gets her revenge as she loses her mind from everything else. Ryan Nicholson only came up with the story here so the script is a little better than his usual features. He was one of the best independent special fx artists around and he shows off his talent here in Torched. This horror short is full of unconformable moments and some splatter retaliation. Michelle Boback was a solid lead in this and the rest of the supporting cast was actually decent unlike most of Nicholson’s productions. You get to see normal woman get crazier and crazier as time goes by. This one is not as sleazy as his other work when it comes to the women. They didn’t want to show off their chest here but had no problem with their ass being filmed. It doesn’t hold back when it comes to the men featured in this. Torched has a solid twist at the end. This showed the beginnings of an entertaining horror director when it came to low budget and underground horror. Horror and Revenge fans will not be disappointed, RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation and special features from Unearthed Films! This 1080 (1.78:1) transfer from a brand new restoration. This grimy production has never looked clean or polished when it comes to it’s visual quality but it’s a huge improvement over the past home video releases. The English Dolby Digital 2.0 track is solid. All of the dialogue is clean, the torture is elevated, and it’s soundtrack has a nice boost. It has two other versions of the feature on here which includes the original 4×3 aspect ratio version and the XXX cut that runs almost 2 minutes longer. It has an “Audio Commentary” with director Ryan Nicholson. He goes over his original concept and story. He chats about how he met the actors and put together the cast. He talks about the locations used. He goes into detail about his experience, the production, the music, and fx. He points out stuff that was reinserted for this director’s cut that was originally removed. He mentions this being his early work and what he learned on it. He is very passionate about this project and he has some great stories about it here. “Behind the Burn: The Making of Torched” is almost 16 minutes. This focus on special fx and gruesome work from the movie. It has a little over 14 minute “Interview” with director Ryan Nicholson. He chats about some of influences and favorite revenge films. He talks about the cast. He goes over his director’s cut that is longer and it has different music. He mentions the DVD release at the time that he was doing this was going to be the only home video version available most likely. It has almost 6 hours of “Out Takes” and “Behind the Scenes” footage from the set broken down into 7 different segments. It has a variety of “Unearthed Films Trailers”. This one is very short so it’s an easy watch. If you are into exploitation, revenge, and grindhouse features, this needs to be in your collection. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!