Last year when I attended Nightmares Film Festival, I had the pleasure of seeing a ton of horror, science fiction, and thriller shorts. All were well-made, but a select few have managed to stick with me over the past year. One of those was Mr. Dentonn, an eerie horror short from Spanish filmmaker Ivan Villamel. The short centered around a girl reading her brother a scary bedtime story, only for the titular fiend of the tale arriving in the house to terrorize them.
It’s a classic set-up, but one that can truly sing in the right hands and Mr. Dentonn belted that tune like Ronnie James Dio. The shorts style played like a wonderful melding of John Carpenter and Mario Bava, ratcheting up tension through its framing and use of color. I’d been hoping ever since then that it might get expanded into a full-length movie. Thankfully, it is! It seems that its record-breaking run on the festival awards circuit has paid off and based on this press release, it’s not hard to see why…
“Mr.Dentonn”, directed by Ivan Villamel, produced by Harmonica Films & Mordisco Films, and played by Irene Aguilar, Kaiet Rodriguez and Ander Pardo, has broken records in its genre, becoming the most awarded and selected horror short film of all time worldwide, with 500 official selections and more than 120 international awards, in addition to more than 1500 screenings around the world. It has been part of worldwide reference festivals in fantastic/horror genre; “International Film Festival of Sitges”, “Screamfest Horror Film Festival Los Angeles”, “Fantasia International Film Festival”, etc … among an uncountable list of referents including Oscars Qualifying Festivals (“Cleveland International Film Festival “,” Leeds International Film Festival “), three times nominated for the prestigious Silver Meliès to the Best European Fantastic Short Film. His tour in festivals makes” Mr.Dentonn” an exception within the genre of horror, achieving that historical mark of most awarded and selected horror short film in history. Its creators are already working to find funding for the feature film project of “Dentonn”, where it could fully develop the mythology of the character.
Some shorts are better kept at their brief length, but this one had enough going on within that it could easily sustain a longer running time. I sincerely hope that it all comes together and we get a Mr. Dentonn feature soon. Unfortunately the full thing is not currently online to show you, but there is at least a trailer below, as well as a poster and some stills retrofitted to look like 1980s lobby cards. Enjoy!
Keep up-to-date on Mr. Dentonn by following the film’s Facebook.