‘If you don’t believe, then you have nothing to fear’
8ight After is a 2020 American found-footage horror feature film about a YouTuber who is terrorised by a demonic presence inhabiting her home. The evil manifests at eight after one in the morning. Meanwhile, the cause of the paranormal infestation seems to derive from a cross found hidden in a wall.
When Deanna Rocca discovered a Portate cross hidden in the wall of her Granada Hills home, she wasn’t prepared for the horror it would unleash. The angled (portate) cross was locked in a puzzle box and concealed inside the wall.
Thinking the treasure was a fortunate find, she started wearing the cross, but it soon began to consume her. “Looking back, there were many signs that something was wrong,” remembers her husband, Vincent Rocca, “but it wasn’t until I saw a shadow sweep across the door on our security cameras that I really realised something was happening.” Vincent began monitoring those security cameras and eventually compiled them into a movie.
Vincent is a reality television editor, Deanna is a zoo vet tech and together they make VLOG videos for their YouTube channel. The couple are high school sweethearts and have been together for over thirty years and married for twenty-one. “She is my world, the most important thing to me, losing her terrifies me. in all our thirty years, I’ve never seen her act like that,” said Vincent.
After combing through thousands of hours of security camera footage and combining it with talking vlog footage Vincent believes he’s created the first-ever reality movie. “It’s a documentary with the touches of a film, like sound design and score. I edited 8ight After just as I would have cut an episode of Hell’s Kitchen, complete with jokes, but our villain is more frightening than Gordon Ramsey,” explained Vincent. “Reality television is a stylised documentary. This is just that, except a movie, a reality movie.” 8ight After is unique in that it doesn’t use interviews to move the story along, but instead uses first-person vlog narration. It could also possibly be the first full-length feature vlog movie.
Since 8ight After grew organically out of vlogs and surveillance footage, the cost of production was zero. The footage was just sitting waiting to be assembled. Vincent elaborated, “I literally did everything on 8ight After the editing, colour correction, sound mix and score. I took it on as a personal challenge. Yes, it does look a lot like Paranormal Activity. Chalk that up to one-man post-production with a lack of creativity. Green night shot footage just doesn’t look good in green, or red, but blue seems to work. I mean, even Survivor uses blue, but when combined with security footage of two people sleeping, of course, it’s going to have that Paranormal Activity vibe.”
At Midnight, October 15th, 8ight After will be available to own in high definition from select digital retailers. A book version compiled from Vincent’s journals is available now on Amazon.
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