Buried Alive 2017: Two Takes on Matthew Robinson’s RIGOR MORTIS

David, a conjoined twin forces his brother Kaine to undergo separation surgery that fails resulting in Kaine’s death. Kaine in turn haunts David reminding him of their time in the limelight. David goes to the morgue to reunite with Kaine to put to rest his guilty feelings. (KF)


Rigor Mortis is a smart, surreal, short horror film. David, played with a perfect combination of comic and serious acting chops, by Mark Elias, wakes up in the hospital after having surgery to separate him from his conjoined twin, Kane (also played by Mark Elias) only to find out his twin died during the procedure. David feels guilty because he pushed Kane into having the surgery.

Between visits from medical staff, David’s deceased twin appears to him and David begins to feel rigor mortis in his limbs. Kane tells David that the rigor mortis will continue to get worse until he looks at his (Kane’s) dead corpse and admits his guilt. (DB)


This short plays like a surreal exercise in atoning the feelings of guilt one has when they force someone else into a situation where the end result is disaster or death. The idea of using a ghost as a manifestation of guilt has been done in horror films of the past with varying results but in the case of this story, it’s wonderfully done. (KF)


This short film dabbles with the body horror genre as the rigor mortis progresses in David, though the film doesn’t go too far with the gore. Rigor Mortis has the humor and the kind of ending that reminds me of a Tales from the Crypt episode.

The cinematography, directing, and acting are all quite good, but there is something annoying about the sound. There seemed to be constant background noise buzzing underneath the dialogue. Based on the black humor used in this film, the hint of body horror, and the themes of life and death, Robinson would be a great director to bring back the Reanimator franchise. (DB)


Highly recommended. (KF)

A full fest schedule can be found at buriedalivefilmfest.com/schedule.

Kenny Fasolo
Hardcore Horror Hound / Equal Rights Activist
I'm a grumpy loudmouthed horror movie fan from upstate NY now living in South New Jersey with his wife. When he isn't mouthing off about horror, he also mouths off about Wrestling and the current state of America.
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Damian Blade
Musical Analysis / Thoughtful Musings
Damian Blade is a published author who has received several writing awards, including the 2002 Nota Bene Reynolds Scholarship. In addition to being a writer, Damian is also a musician, singer, and songwriter. As a writer, he is influenced by Steven King, Dean Koontz, and Edgar Allan Poe. His favorite musical influences are Black Sabbath, Neil Young, Pink Floyd, The Cure, and Alice Cooper. Damian has a Bachelor’s degree in both Sociology and Criminal Justice and has worked as a consultant in the mental health field for several years.

“Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.” - John Donne
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