Underground Film Journal

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Tim Sullivan: A Christmas Treat

By Mike Everleth ⋅ December 21, 2009

‘Tis the season to start feeling jolly, so here’s an old holiday short film from horror maestro Tim Sullivan, A Christmas Treat. In fact, this is Sullivan’s first short film directed back when he was an NYU student back in the ’80s. It’s a really well done short with a nice, slow set-up and a terrific punchline. It reminds me a lot of the old Tales From the Darkside TV show, which would have been a contemporary at the time this was produced.

I don’t think I’ve written about Tim Sullivan on the Underground Film Journal before, but he’s one helluva nice guy and a wonderful horror movie director. There are two films by him you need to check out if you haven’t already. The first is 2001 Maniacs, an updating of the Herschell Gordon Lewis splatter classic that stars the legendary Robert Englund and the wonderfully quirky Giuseppe Andrews, an amazing director in his own right. It’s a deranged, gore-filled Southern good time.

Sullivan followed up Maniacs with a complete shift in style. Driftwood is the subtly spooky story about a bad seed sent to a reform camp where he’s haunted by the ghost of another troubled teen who was murdered there. Both 2001 Maniacs and Driftwood — not underground films, but really good, solid horror flicks — are available on Amazon, Netflix and iTunes. Links here:

2001 Maniacs: Amazon | Netflix | iTunes
Driftwood: Amazon | Netflix | iTunes

A sequel to 2001 Maniacs called 2001 Maniacs: Field of Screams will be released in 2010, so be on the lookout for that. It should be great. Also, one thing I didn’t know about Tim that I found out skimming his IMDB page, one of his earliest film jobs was working on the horror movie The Deadly Spawn, a real hidden gem that you don’t hear much about anymore, but should.

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