Elwood Quincy Walker’s ‘Kissed’ (2020) Horror Short Review: Getting Down With the Dead

It takes a certain type of person to become a coroner or mortician. Constantly surrounded by death, poking and prodding lifeless bodies, preparing corpses for an open casket … or a closed casket if luck should have it. Now I’m sure there are plenty of individuals in the profession of death who are genuine and friendly. However, the coroner/mortician featured in Kissed, the latest short horror by Filmmaker Elwood Quincy Walker (Trick – read our review here), just might be a little too friendly.

James Warfield as Norman and Aurora Persichetti as the corpse in Kissed

Freshening up a cadaver eloquently portrayed by Aurora Persichetti (Trick 2019), a coroner named Norman (James Warfield: Bloodsucking Bastards 2015) has a conversation with his new deceased friend. As he verbalizes subtle hints of the morbid pleasure he takes in his job, the coroner’s behavior is far more telling. After adding a touch of his own, Norman closes up shop to call it a night. However, much to his surprise, his abortion of adoration has not gone unnoticed as it’s returned in a nightmarish way.

After bringing us the short Halloween horror treat, Trick, Director Elwood Quincy Walker returns to showcase his talented cinematic eye with Kissed. Opening with a ’40s/’50s score, the film reminds one of the Bates Motel from Psycho or The Overlook from The Shining, which adds a classic horror vibe that genre fans will love. Taking over as the music fades is a well-written script penned by Walker and Warfield, who then bring it to life. Projecting an inkling of Norman Bates through his character, Warfield makes your skin crawl with every word and mannerism. However, it is Persichetti who delivers one hell of a final punch in the spine-chilling conclusion.

Enhancing the look and feel of this morbid 6 minute short are Salina Kyle (Trick 2019) and Ryan Ward (The Nightmare Gallery 2019 – read our review here) handling makeup/special effects. Their crucial attention to detail is noticeably instrumental from beginning to end. Helping to capture all of this is Cinematographer Bennett Barbosa (Trick 2019), who brings forth a beautiful, ghoulish touch in every frame. Driven by such a talented team, Kissed is a phenomenal, well-polished work of horror that’s sure to make your blood run cold. Many film connoisseurs seem to agree, as Walker’s work earned several awards and nominations on the film festival circuit last year.

Deemed worthy of disturbing its horror-loving viewers, the short film genre site ALTER recently released Kissed where it received overwhelming praise from fans. A good horror short will creep you out. A great horror short will creep you out while leaving you wishing for a feature length film. Walker’s latest cinematic venture is the latter, leaving you craving more. Click the embedded video below to enjoy this must-see horror short!

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