In just a little over seven months from now, people will put on costumes of the usual choices-policeman, firefighter, doctor, witches, devils, etc. There will be an overly large group of people who will be dressing up like their favorite character from the hit show ‘The Walking Dead’, along with the possibility of dressing as a ‘walker’. And don’t forget about the vampires. Once the costume is chosen, the fake blood is applied, among a few other features to add to the whole presentation. From that point, those individuals are ready to celebrate Halloween.
So, you are probably wondering why Halloween would be spoken about in April. Most folks just want the sun to stay out and help the temperatures rise to a point where we don’t see our breath in the air anymore. Well, Halloween is a holiday that clusters of the general public around the world celebrate year-round. The scare and horror factors are what give the day its unique charm. People come in droves each year to the haunted attractions that are sprinkled all around the area, from mazes to abandoned hospitals. Local musician/filmmaker Henrique Couto will be adding his stamp on the calendar day with his upcoming horror film, Babysitter Massacre. “I was watching some of these slasher/horror movies on Netflix, and I felt like I could make one that could be there with them. So, I went to work on the script, and it really took off from there”, Couto explained when I asked him about how the idea for the movie came up. The movie will be having its world premiere on April 12th at Englewood Cinemas in Englewood, Ohio starting at 10.
Babysitter Massacre’s storyline takes place in the small town of Ray Falls, Ohio. A group of young women that belonged to the same babysitting club in high school have gathered together on Halloween evening. The group split from one another when one of the girls died suddenly. Unfortunately for the ladies, a masked man is coming after the women and killing them one by one. The question is-who is this killer?! Why is he coming after the women who were part of the babysitting group?! Can anyone stop this person?! “The movie is going to be a bloodbath”, Couto said jokingly when we recently sat down together to talk about the movie.
Couto is a duel threat in the area. He has recorded a couple of albums playing his signature insturment-the raging electric ukulele. Its unique in its way, and his music is full of angst and snarky lyrics. However, working on films has been his top priority for most of his life. When he was old enough to drive, he packed his bags and moved to New Jersey to work at a production studio. At the production studio he would work on post-production and also go work at conventions to help promote the production companies upcoming movies. Years being with the company gave Couto the experience that he would need to begin his own journey into the filmmaking business. His move back to Dayton only has made the process much more enjoyable. “This town (Dayton) really seems to be the place for me, with lots of supportive and creative people to work with.”
The horror aspect of the movie won’t be new for Couto. HeadCheese, Slumber Party Murder Mania, Faces of Schlock, Marty Jenkins and the Vampie Bitches are some his films that are part of the increasing collection of the genre. One thing that sets them apart from other horror films is an element of sarcasm to them. Watching them you can’t help but laugh at times at the dialog with the characters. The films tend to lean on the side of not taking themselves too seriously. Then without warning-Couto will send the shock value and supply some frightening moments.
Bleeding Through and Depression: The Movie took a different path than the earlier films. Bleeding Through was a thriller about a young woman who descends into a life of chaos when her parents pass away. Depression was a comedy that centered on a group of people whose lives are anything but smooth. With Babysitter Massacre, Couto will be returning to his roots. With this film, he will be making his viewers try to squirm and turn away to a new level. “The torture scenes are very hard to watch, I am not going to lie”, mentioned Couto.
Couto is already hard at work on a couple of other projects, including one titled A Bulldog for Christmas, which is scheduled to be released in December. The film is about a cynical college student being magically transformed into a bulldog until she learns the meaning of her family and the Christmas spirit during the holiday break. “I love talking animal movies, so I thought that it would be great to make one. Also, I needed something on the lighter side of things after working on Babysitter Massacre (laughter)”, Couto said. “We have some really funny ideas to have put in place with the movie. We also have a really cute bulldog. What more could you want?!” The project is currently going thru a fundraiser on the website IndieGoGo.com. The project has a few weeks left to make its goal, which will help pay for production cost and help manufacture DVD’s and Blu-Ray discs. To help contribute to the movie, go to this link.
To see the next great locally made slasher film Babysitter Massacre, come to the world premiere screening at Englewood Cinemas on April 12th. Showtime is 10pm. To add some fun to the screening, and being as how that this is a Halloween themed movie, whoever comes in costume will receive a prize from Game Swap in Kettering and Are U Game in Piqua. Tickets for the showing are $8. To see the trailer, click below.