Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) seems to be a new trend. Well, not new—it’s been around for a minute—but finally seeing the mainstream light of day. An act for one’s mental and soulful sooth. A little odd, but to each his/her own, right? But you know what they say: “this is why we can’t have nice things.” Someone will always find a way to f—k it up! While there are those who seek it for calm, others seek it for maliciousness.
Award-winning director Alexandra Serio introduces the new face (or sound) of fear, with the first ever ASMR horror short, TINGLE MONSTERS. The film exposes an ASMR vlogger with a devoted fan base who returns from hiatus. As she embraces her ecstatic followers, a moment of pleasantry morphs into a moment of unpleasantry.
In a nutshell, the film is straight-forward and the whole ASMR thing is creepy, so it serves as a fairly good platform to expose yet another form of mankind’s evils. Another outlet to place a spotlight on harassment and inevitable violence against women. Human nature can be beautiful and ugly. Nothing has proven it more than the world wide web. TINGLE MONSTERS generates a mood of uncertainty and discomfort. No matter what, there are no safe spaces these days, especially for women. Alexandra has the perfect setting, vocals, and presence to hijack one’s attention. The buildup is obvious, but both engaging and entertaining, nonetheless.
Serio’s tingle provides enough to keep fright freaks on the edge. It doesn’t tiptoe over the narrative or provide optimism when it comes to online bullying. The net is a scary and toxic environment riddled with pitfalls of misery. If anything, the film can serve as an educational tool. A look into another world of sinister. It’s not reinventing the internet horror genre, because we’ve seen the net as a setting in other horrors, but it’s unique in the sense of taking an outlet that’s become quite popular, flips it, and made it even more frightening. Much respect to Serio’s vision and creativity for going there. Curious what’s on deck.
That said, vlogging will never feel the same!
Out May 20, 2020 on Vimeo