I am always a fan of psychological thriller films, a subgenre of thriller that explores the psychology of its characters, who are often unstable. What makes a thriller psychological is that the biggest questions revolve around the minds and behavior. Multi-Palanca Award Winning Writer and Director Njel De Mesa’s Coronaphobia is a thoroughgoing horror/thriller that will surely satisfy phobophiles.
A failed rip off turned gory. The film is an international caliber. Four tourists lockdown in the Philippines due to Coronavirus outbreak and running low on funds to get back on their respective countries. They came up with a wicked plan with the aid of the receptionist in the hotel they are staying to steal money from an abandoned corporate building right across the street. An unforeseen event brought them to their worst nightmare. There is a demented man in the building, a janitor who has been living in seclusion for many months inside that deserted building since the pandemic. The said custodian has an implausible fear of catching the virus and has gone to extreme measures in protecting himself from strangers who don’t take this disease seriously. The janitor (well played by Paolo Paraiso) started to display a predatory violence as he hunts and ultimately captures and exploits his target.
Writer/Director Njel De Mesa’s Coronaphobia is a gripping cautionary tale for people who still don’t believe that the Covid-19 threat is real. It is also a mnemonic not to let our fears overcome our sense of compassion and humanity. This motion picture is one of the very few full-length feature films written, shot and produce during the time of this global pandemic that weigh up the economic, psychological, and sociological impacts of Covid-19. The film suits to enthrall fans of the horror/thriller genre, as well as, give meaningful insights on how fake news alter perception especially conjoined with endmost and prolonged isolation.
What we’ve learned from COVID is that isolation is everyone’s problem. It doesn’t just happen to older adults; it happens to us all. Loneliness and isolation is deadly. It affects people’s mental health.
The writer and director of this film, Njel De Mesa did Subtext, KontrAdiksiyon, and Respeto ( Winner Best Picture, Carrousel International Du Film/ Cinemalaya Film festival / Cyprus Film Days International Festival/ Exground Filmfest/ International Film festival of India/ Nominee : Rotterdam International Film Festival / Shanghai International Film Festival).
With the track record, eligibility and experience of Njel De Mesa, this film is a must see and everyone should watch it. A consummate horror/thriller. The writer/director strongly incorporated incidents of physical violence and psychological terror and Paolo Paraiso’s role captured well the disturbed and psychotic character of a psychopath janitor.
This film is also produced by Njel De Mesa (NDM Studios).