DVD Lord of Tears

DVD Lord of Tears
DVD Lord of Tears
Run time: 100 min
Rating: 6.0
Genres: Drama | Horror
Director: Lawrie Brewster
Writers: Sarah Daly
Stars: David Schofield, Alexandra Hulme, Euan Douglas
Lord of Tears tells the story of James Findlay, a school teacher plagued by recurring nightmares of a mysterious and unsettling entity. Suspecting that his visions are linked to a dark incident in his past, James returns to his childhood home, a notorious mansion in the Scottish Highlands, where he uncovers the disturbing truth behind his dreams, and must fight to survive the brutal consequences of his curiosity. Written by Sarah Daly
Country: UK
Release Date: 25 October 2013 (UK)


  1. The "Lord of Tears" team might be some of the smartest crowdfunders in horror recently, basically giving horror fans exactly what they want to see with their teasing. They doubled their goal and then some, and it's not a surprise when their main teaser was the image of a slenderman-like figure in Victorian clothing, an owl head and long freakish fingers/claws. It's what children's and adult's nightmares alike are made of. And now it is time for this Gothic and poetic horror movie to reach its anticipating audience and reviewers.

    It tells the classic tale of a troubled man returning to his past to find answers. James Findlay is a school teacher who has been suffering from nightmares of a figure we've come to know as the "Owlman". As I said before, a well-dressed human-like figure with an owl's head and long claws for fingers. This is a vision that's been haunting him since his childhood, but that he has finally put to rest. When his mother dies the Owlman returns to his dreams, and James sets out to get rid of his nightmares once and for all – by returning to his childhood's home where the nightmares started. At his return he meets a woman who he starts hanging out with to keep his sanity, while he investigates the history of the house and what happened to him in the past.

    The movie does where its influences and inspirations on its sleeve, and sometimes even in the plot. History, religion, ghost stories and authors like Lovecraft, Hammer horror movies, Japanese horror, and so forth is very much all of the "Lord of Tears". And not in a bad way, it successfully uses what it needs to tell an atmospheric story. Except maybe the Japanese horror aspect, especially aesthetically and in the editing in certain parts – that might be one of the low points of the movie for me. It's actually a quite specific moment where you get a sense of that kicking in, and that's also when I think the movie went slightly downhill.

    The build-up of this movie is very long but it also has to introduce you to a number of characters, its main location, much of the lore without spoiling anything, and so on. In true classic horror fashion it knows that you need to be aware of what you are watching before it brings out the big guns – or the big owl. The Gothic Hammer horror atmosphere might be the strongest influence, which comes free with the territory by its location, telling a ghost story and using history and religion to do so. It's a movie that heavily relies on its back story and they successfully build an interesting lore. The atmosphere is really strong within this movie, but I don't think it delivered any actual scares. Its iconic Owlman is a great character and many of the shots are fantastic, but I had hopes for a figure that would haunt me long after the movie ended. The Owlman didn't end up feeling like a villain as much as the one to guide James. Nothing wrong with that, and not necessarily a bad thing, but not quite what I thought I'd get whenever I looked at the terrific design of the character. What Owlman lacked in scares for me, I think it made up in purpose towards the end.

    "Lord of Tears" has a familiar story and quite often you can predict what's about to happen, but when things come full circle at the end you're definitely pleased with the experience. It has a few bumps on the road, such as the Japanese horror inspired part later in the movie (at least this was the case for me). But between the location, the soundtrack and the Owlman, this is a movie that's packed with atmosphere and well worth a watch. A lot of independent productions lack atmosphere and I think that's the main force of this one. It's a good watch, but personally it's not something I will revisit any time soon. Definitely worth buying and hopefully it will deliver more chills and scares to someone else, but either way it delivers a well-rounded and personal story that many horror fans will love.

    More reviews at FilmBizarro.com

  2. I saved watching this DVD (I pledged and got an advance copy, wrapped beautifully in black rafia paper with a single, solitary owl feather (the reference will become clear later) a real Gothic halloween present!) until I was alone and in a suitably dimly lit bedroom, as this is the most optimum atmosphere in which to immerse oneself in this glorious slice of dark horror. I had heard of the plans to make this film, through Sarah Daly (singer/songwriter of Metaphorest fame) and Lawrie Brewster, her partner in all things and their need for pledgers to help fund it. This seems the way to go for independent film makers these days, and I must say it works well, as pledgers get to see the finished film before any cinema release and plus get some cool collectors items into the bargain, like T-Shirts, soundtrack CD's as part of a double pack combi (my own particular purchase) and downloads of production booklets, chronicling the day to day making of the film and interviews/ photographs and storyboards. Well worth my money and patience. And I was not disappointed!

    The story revolves around James, a haunted schoolteacher, who underwent some very traumatic events in his childhood, which resulted in his separation from his Mother and his family home. Upon his Mother's death, he inherits the old family home, a brooding mansion in the Scottish highlands, the scene of his childhood trauma. A letter from his departed Mother warns him: "Do not return there" which, after a few tortured dreams in preceding nights, he chooses to ignore. He takes leave from his teaching position and travels there to try to get to the bottom of the mystery surrounding his childhood and the dreams he is now having, of a tall, Owl-Headed man with elongated arms and claws for hands. When he arrives, he meets Evie (beautifully portrayed by Lexy Hulme) an American with wanderlust who dreams of living in Paris, and regales him of words in French that there are no English translations for. The pair quickly become friends, and she sets out to help him in his investigations into his past saying "I love a good mystery". She lives in the converted stables adjacent to the mansion, but more and more she seems to take up residence in the mansion with him, and in a couple of dream sequences, comes to his room, scantily clad, sits upon his bed and after uttering "Let me take care of you", morphs into the aforementioned Owlman. James' dreams become more and more tortuous and some of them even spill over into his waking life, as he slowly starts to unravel, seeing the Owlman everywhere, and hearing his voice all the time. He cannot decide if it is a dream or real, and this starts to unhinge him, making him question his sanity. Alongside this story is the tale of Allen, whose Father is dying, and who sometimes pops up in James' vividly horrific dreams. And with the mysterious Evie still helping and beguiling in equal measure (one particular sequence where she dances very coquettishly while James sits in a chair, watching and unwittingly part of the dance, was a real joy to behold, and another in a swimming pool where she flounces in, all Dita Von Teese-like and joins James in a play water fight) the mystery deepens and finally comes to a gloriously strange and frightening conclusion, when it turns out that Evie is not who she says she is and a new nightmare for James begins.

    I don't want to give too much away for those who have not seen it, and wish to do so, but suffice to say, that plot development, and the final twist, make this film uncommon amongst bigger budgeted American so- called "Horror" films in that the dread and suspense, the cutting of the dream sequences in particular, and the soundtrack music (ably and beautifully supplied by writer Sarah Daly) all combine to make it a most lavish and truly frightening cinematic experience.

    It goes on release on October 25th at the Bram Stoker International Film Festival and I would urge you to try and see it. I can only see it snowballing and gathering pace to become a true cult classic. Alternatively you can buy it on DVD and Blu-Ray at lordoftears.com and also purchase T-shirts depicting the Owlman in a great range of suitably Gothic colours.

    Finally I must say that this is a film that will stay with me long after it has ended, and its echoes will follow me down many sleepy tunnels, fueling nightmares of my own, and to me, that is its biggest compliment, as I do not scare easily.

    Bravo Sarah, Lawrie and HEX Media for producing a real gem of contemporary British Horror

  3. Imbued with creepiness from the opening, this is a fabulous ride into psychological horror – I enjoyed it more than I thought I would!

    It's a throwback to the old ghost stories, with palpable atmosphere I haven't experienced in a horror movie for a long time. In recent years (if we are talking mainstream), I think Insidious is a movie which almost deliver's this sort of atmospheric flavour, but Lord Of Tears isn't a big Hollywood production, it is independent, so this achievement is impressive indeed and built on the sheer talent of the film makers alone. It's also refreshing to watch a movie of this genre with none of the Hollywood pretensions; it's stripped bare of any unnecessary trimmings or overwrought special effects – so it's back to basics, making it natural, raw and authentic.

    I would love to give a breakdown of my favourite parts, but I don't want spoil it; so I can only recommend it as a fan of the genre. In time, this should garner a cult (if not, mainstream) following.

    I look forward to future projects & I hope this reaches the larger audience it deserves. Beautiful to watch & equally frightening, in both vision & sound, I definitely got my horror fix today……Now breath slowly…it's only a movie.

  4. Dark, Creepy, Foreboding. This is how horror films should be made.

    The story deals with a mans childhood recollections of a mysterious creature that used to torment him. After the passing of his mother he travels back to his childhood home where the memories he once buried are about to rise again.

    The setting is a remote Scottish manor house, the cast is minimal and the atmosphere is thick with tension. The mystery is unravelled slowly but is all the more interesting for it. The twist in the tale caught me totally off guard. Once it was revealed though it becomes quite chilling and the supernatural element is ramped up.

    The Owl man is a menacing figure. His history is elaborated on which gives depth to the character. He's not a slasher figure which makes a refreshing change these days. He radiates menace and is certain of the fact that those marked will become his prey.

    I can't praise this film enough. It does remind me of films like The Wicker Man and Salems Lot. There's a lot of day time scenes in which everything seems very jolly. There's always the underlying threat that once night falls bad things will happen. A great concept incorporating Pagan imagery and using a fantastically original new creature.

    This film deserves to go mainstream. If you're looking for a horror film which goes back to it's roots, then please do check this out.

Leave a Reply

Lost Password