Q&A with Jack Brookman, Director of “INFRACKTION”
Name a Horror character you relate to on a spiritual/personal level?
I’d like to think I shared some personality traits with Ripley from Alien or MacReady from The Thing, but I’m probably more akin to Erlend from Dead Snow – a bit clumsy and always quick with a quote.
You’ve gotta go through some bad ideas to get to the good ones. Tell us one of your bad ideas. How do you get past the bad ones to find your spark?
Oh, for sure! When I was in college my brother and I tried to piece together a Fast and Furious spoof, which was truly awful. We were going to call it the Slow and Sedate as none of the racers could go over 30 mph and all drove hunks of junk.
Learning how to get past a bad idea takes time. The more you write, make and watch, the more you begin to understand what makes for a bad idea. For me, if I’m enjoying writing or creating something, it’s often a good sign that something good will come of it. If I find it really hard work to get something out of it, or I’m bored, that’s when I know that what I’m doing is the wrong thing.
Do you consider yourself part of a horror community?
I guess so. I’m not much of a social media fiend, so I don’t tend to be part of many groups or discussions about horror. However, hopefully that can change by being partnered with Alter!
When you’re building the world of your film, where do you look for inspiration?
I always try to get inspiration from as many different places as I can – reading, watching, playing, talking. Some of the best sources of inspiration come from completely random places. The idea for my short film originally came from a YouTube video about fracking created by a channel called Kurzgesagt. As with many other film makers, lots of inspiration came from the many films I’ve watched over the years, in particular films like 28 Days Later, Dead Silence and Creep. I also get a lot of inspiration from video games like The Last of Us and Fallout.
What would you do if you woke up inside of your film?
I’d go to the Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for it all to blow over!
Who would be on your ultimate horror villain squad?
Pennywise (I.T.), Hannibal Lecture (Silence of the Lambs), Freddy Krueger (Nightmare on Elm Street), Mary Shaw (Dead Silence) and The Evil Force (Evil Dead).
Lightning round: Freddy or Jason? Stephen King or H.P. Lovecraft? Practical or CGI? Post Apocalypse or Pre Apocalypse?
Freddy. Although he became a bit cheesy in the later films, his original concept was far creepier, and his claw hand is an iconic horror weapon!
Very tricky! Probably Stephen King, although Lovecraft certainly isn’t far behind.
Definitely practical. CGI is amazing and by no means should it not be used, but I agree with the perspective that CGI should be used to augment practical effects or create something that otherwise wouldn’t be possible. Having something physical that the actors can not only react to properly, but that the audience can also see is part of the character’s surroundings is always better in my books. You also don’t get floating head syndrome when using practical effects!
I’m a sucker for post apocalypse films. Mad Max: Fury Road has to be one of the best post apocalypse films ever created – who doesn’t want to see a blind dude jamming out on a chariot made of speakers!
What scares you, and does it inspire your storytelling?
I find suspense far scarier than the event it’s leading to. Often, it’s those moments of suspense that really play upon your sense and emotions. Take the Woman in Black stage play – there are several moments when the actor is alone on the stage describing to you what they see and hear right before something happens that makes you think “you’re dead”, and those are some of the best bits of the play! Because of my love for suspense, I try to make things that are slow burning, that take their time to build into a scare or a story rather than jumping to the punchline.
And finally, Ghostface would like to know ‘What’s your favourite scary movie?’
Without a doubt, it has to be John Carpenter’s The Thing from 1982. My brother first introduced me to it a few years back and I’ve watched it numerous times since. The creature’s simplicity is also what makes it so terrifying – the idea that this parasitic alien life form, even from the slightest encounter, can slowly take over someone’s body and replicate them exactly. And nobody knows who’s gonna be next! Well, that is until it gets you too!