I attended my first screening movie premiere for Living Space back in 2018. Turns out I got more than I bargained for because this one has Nazis, and is one of those psychological horror movies that make you think it’s one thing and then show you something else. Now it’s available in Australia through your 7Plus app or on Amazon Prime if you need to stream it elsewhere.
Steven Spiel’s Debut Film
Steven Spiel (director/writer/actor) is an up-and-comer in the filmmaking universe. One to watch and totally approachable. He was a pleasure to meet and absolutely obliging for interviews. Check out my one-on-one with him via the link at the end of the review.
Nazi Undead Review of a Psychological Horror Movie
Steven Spiel | Australia 2018 | 80 Minutes
What’s Nazi Undead About?
- Imagine you’re on a romantic holiday and your car breaks down. In Germany, loved-up couples Brad and Ashley end up at a lonely farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. But will they survive the night?
- Release in March 2018.
- Starring Leigh Scully, Georgia Chara, Andy McPhee, and Emma Leonard.
Living Space starts with a back-story and, the beginning starts with a mini-history lesson. The film smoothly flows into some great scenic imagery with aerial shots (from cinematographer Branco Grabovac).
Later I found out this filmed in Geelong of all places yet it’s set in Germany.
I was instantly shocked to hear an English-speaking German young man converse with an almost American-sounding Ashley (Georgia Chara of Neighbours and Home, and Away series).
Over the course of the film, her Aussie-fied American accent grew on me because of her solid performance. If you aren’t a fan of characters screaming in horror flicks, you will be pleased with many scenes usually wrought with shrill sounds.
Ashley’s boyfriend Brad (Leigh Scully also of Home and Away) seemed much more natural as an American. Yet I know Australian horror is on-trend and I think, I would have preferred they’d been cast as Australian tourists.
This matter got discussed at question time after the film, and somehow it was decided the roles were better as young Americans. I found it impossible to raise my hand and point I disagreed, but I do, but at the right time and the right place and all that.
This film is what could be considered elevated horror but not the arty type. It does make you think and you do need to pay attention. Not the type that many debate as being un-horror because there is no violence or scare factor. This one comes complete with a Nazi misogynist, ghosts, sewn lips and cracked limbs. Living Space is definitely born of some of the more well-known concepts. I had a flashback of the film Triangle (2009) but Living Space has its own horror trope infusion.
Psychological Horror Movies
The story itself is intricately woven with tiny speckles of detail. I did notice certain things along the way that were confirmed during the chatter afterward. I noticed the infinity necklace. Bonus points for me. All the imagery is reflected back into the narrative. The acting was solid, but in my opinion, they just weren’t as good as the idea. Nazis and all.
The make-up and effects are top-notch. When I realized the likes of Steven Boyle were on the team, I knew why. If anything is going to grab your interest in a low-budget Australian independent film production it’s a name like that on your team. He is responsible for effects in movies like 30 Days of Night, King Kong, Bait, Ghost Ship. Believe it or not many more major league blockbusters — even Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones.
Worth a Re-watch?
Living Space isn’t without its flaws, not a lot of independent film is. For me, I had a great time with it and I’d give it a repeat viewing. Somehow, it’s one of those rare beasts that cause you to contemplate afterward and I found it clever. Sure this film has some predictability but I also noticed Ashley’s character development within her continual loop.
I enjoyed this one and I think it stands out in the crowd.
I give Living Space
3 infinity necklaces out of 5.
News on the Sequel to Nazi Undead
There is an upcoming sequel in the works. I love the thought of Sebastian (Erik Vent) becoming more central to the concept.
- Australian horror movie Killing Ground. Killing Ground review, can you handle it?
- RELATED: Anna and the Apocalypse
- Zombies: The Horde 2009 / Army of the Dead
- INTERVIEWS ON MOTHER OF MOVIES 3 Questions with Steven Spiel / The Resort 2021
- On Amazon Prime: Cargo 2018
Living Space Premiere (Brisbane) Psychological Horror Movies
Afterward, I stood near Natalie Forward (producer) and asked if I could pass on my questions to Steven Spiel. I introduced myself to Mr. Spiel (and managed to not tell him who I was.) Thankfully, I’d managed to say some non-stupid sounding words and chatted with him about how great Australian horror is.
Seen any of these Nazi undead films? None of them are psychological horror movies
- Overlord 2018
- Dead Snow 2009
- Green Room 2015
- Yoga Hosers 2016
- Frankenstein’s Army 2013
- Outpost 2012
- Blood Creek 2008