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‘Night Shift’: A Bold Attempt to Talk About Death

The film does not promise a real scare, but a real psychological-drama inside a morgue. It’s a bold attempt to talk about death. Laranas’s description of the place as a contained, cerebral horror is an ideal reference.

Let these words of JK Rowling be a reminder about the film Night Shift is, “To the well-organized mind, death is but the next adventure.”

After watching the film written and directed by Yam Laranas, it has opened some doors of possibilities about life after death. It was a fitting setting that Laranas chose the morgue to be the foundation of his latest psychological-drama (something that is far from its brand or popularly labeled as to its genre).



Laranas wittingly utilizes and explores the fears of its lead character in his film. Yam Concepcion as Jesse is convincing enough to paint a character who is being paranoid about the things she’s feeling, hearing, and seeing around her.

That one scene she was fighting her sleepiness is too real.

His first-hand experiences as someone who has a medical background since his mom is a nurse and his relatives are doctors make him more believable in using some facts about cadavers. He even cites Dr. Sam Parnia as his bases to reveal that death is not a moment in time, rather, a process instead.

Scenes in the film were not the usual scare approach that most horror films have done. It is more of a mind-fucking approach that approaches fear in the lead character and the audience, too. Laranas handles his scenes with all subtlety. His storytelling is eerie and shocking at the same time.

Using also the concept of the scriptural passage about the Final Judgment is enough to create a horrific effect.

Ericson Navarro‘s production is believable as he manages to transport the audience to experience a morgue-like scenario, except for one minor detail that’s laughable. The intercom attached or telephone on the tiled wall had no cables at all.

Perhaps, the biggest thumbs-up is Oscar Fogelström‘s music. It builds fear for both Jesse and the moviegoers.

The film does not promise a real scare, but a real psychological-drama inside a morgue. It’s a bold attempt to talk about death. Laranas’s description of the place as a contained, cerebral horror is an ideal reference. Watch out for a twist towards the conclusion of the film.

It is still showing in cinemas nationwide. Also in the film are Michael de Mesa, Epy Quizon, Soliman Cruz, Irma Adlawan, Mercedes Cabral, and Ruby Ruiz.

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Written by Jude Cartalaba

Writer-Editor-Facilitator, Creative Strategist-Marketer, Publicist and PR Practitioner. Publisher and Netrepreneur.

Currently, he writes for BroadwayWorld.com Philippines and for an upcoming TV and movie guide called SYNOPSIS magazine.

Apart from being a writer, he facilitates writing workshops, and does consulting for creative marketing strategies and PR work.

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