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January 21, 2023


Last April, I picked up a handful of films from an independent movie maker out of Flint, MI. Tyler Zickafoose (if that’s not an awesome name, I don’t know what is) and his Atomic Swan Films company were set up next to me at the April Ghoul’s Day event, hosted by the Flint Horror Collective. Tyler was extremely personable and was obviously passionate about making movies. I decided to buy a couple, letting him know I write reviews for this website and to be warned that if I didn’t like something, I would shred it like an asshole.

Surprisingly, or maybe not, he was down for it. He also gave me one or two for free (it’s been a while – sorry, I can’t remember exactly) despite my potential assholery to come. Now, nearly a year later, I’m finally getting off my ass to review them.


So far I’ve only watched three short films. I thought these were all full-length features so I gave one to a friend, not thinking to review it because it must have been the exception in the pile. If I’d known, I would have included it for this post.

Oh well. Let’s just move on with our lives and talk about the two shorts, “Don’t Be Late” and “Pedie the Clown: Vampire Hunter”.

DON’T BE LATE (2018)

The DVD begins with a few trailers for upcoming projects – “Killer Raccoon Fish in 3D”, some kind of Wings Pizza thing, “Among Thieves”, which tells us nothing about the film, and “Rise of the Ninja”. I’m pretty sure I have the “Rise of the Ninja” film so look forward to THAT review later.

The main short is about a dad and his son heading to the video rental store to get that “dinosaur movie where the dinosaurs chase all the people”. Despite the video store not having a porn section (which this guy should know since he bitches later about being a loyal customer, but I digress), dad gets the movie. The rental store clerk, Mr. Friendly, instructs him to return it by tomorrow at 10:00pm and “don’t be late”.

Despite the gentle reminder, dad brings the movie back a day late and is charged a $2 fee. This is when he pitches an absolute fit, ranting about being a loyal customer and how shitty the place and he ain’t paying. But instead of storming out, he decides to use the bathroom first to take a dump.

When you gotta go, you gotta go, you know?

As you can imagine, Mr. Friendly isn’t too pleased with the turn of events and grabs a rusty hammer to solve the issue.



Look, I like the idea of it. Short, straight to the point, no excessive padding (well, maybe a little with the additional scene with another customer), shows us everything we need without massive exposition dumps to explain character motivations or plot lines. Granted, the acting is pretty bad, the editing choppy as fuck, and the sound is completely uneven. But I have to say it was okay. Sort of.

3/4 hatchet (out of 5)



The next short opens with a title screen describing the following footage as found at an unknown location and filmed at an unknown time. Anyone with heart issues should NOT watch it.

Pedie the Clown is teaching a group of kids how to build their own vampire hunting kit. The film focuses only on Pedie as he describes each item while he smokes, drinks, and drops a bunch of f-bombs. Eventually, one of the kids points to a vampire off screen and Pedie steps away to take care of it.

When he returns, disheveled, wig askew, and bible tucked into his pants, he wraps up the show reminding the kids they’ll be exploring yoga next week.



Look, I actually liked this one. The sound is better, the only editing needed was for the commercial breaks, and Tuan Edwards as Pedie was fucking hilarious.

Yes, he was the same guy who played the dad in the video rental short, but maybe since Pedie didn’t really interact with any other characters, it was easier to lose Tuan and only see the clown. Also, he spoke in a high squeaky voice while delivering zingers like “holier than thou water” in reference to booze that, “yes, tastes like Jesus’s piss”.

I mean, I actually had to pause the DVD because I was laughing pretty hard.

I wouldn’t call this a short film. If anything, it’s a great comedic skit – simplistic and funny as fuck – but not a film.

2 hatchets (out of 5)


NOTE: I wish I could link something but their YouTube channel hasn't uploaded anything for 8 years and the FaceBook page was last updated in 2020. So...not sure what's up with that. 

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