Spider One Weaves A Web Of Interesting Stories With Allegoria

Director: Spider One
Writers: Spider One, Krsy Fox
Starring: Krsy Fox, Adam Busch, Bryce Johnson, Scout Compton
Run time: 79 minutes
RLJE Films/Shudder

Spider One (Michael David Cummings) who many might know from his band Powerman 5000. He is also the younger brother of Rob Zombie.

One turns in his rockstar wardrobe to write and direct his first feature-length film in Allegoria. The film follows a group of different artists. Each story unbeknownst to them intertwines one another. The artist has their own insecurities and obsessions that manifest in different ways (monsters, demons and death).

The film starts off right with a biting monologue from the acting coach Robert Anderson Wright (John Ennis). Some will remember Ennis as a cast member from Mr. Show. This powerful performance is fitting for an acting coach. He personifies intensity and excellence, which he expects from his students. Student Brody (Krsy Fox) gives a possessed and passionate performance. She bites back at Wright in a demonic way. This isn’t a metaphor, but rather a real demonic possession. The reveal and reasoning for this will show up later on in the film.

Each short story within a story is a smart way for the audience to digest each storyline. Although many of the little webs are fun, they could overstay their welcome if too long. For instance, There’s a segment about a screenwriter who writes about a serial killer. This killer comes to life. He doesn’t think that the writer’s story is believable enough. Not content with the story as is he adds his own bloody interpretation to the narrative.

Scream Queen Scout Taylor-Compton (or as credited in the film Scout Compton) shows up in a story as Ivy. On a date with John (Adam Busch) they end up back at John’s house and this is where Ivy shows John her particular artistry. This story injects the film with some much-needed dark humour. It is also nice to see Compton work their acting chops in a not-so-serious way.

What would a story from a heavy metaller be without one tale about musicians? The last story in this collection centers around a punk band. Brody’s friend Hope (Josephine Chang) is the vocalist in the band. After jamming the group gets into a discussion about music. One of the members reveals they have discovered something. They discovered how to transform consciousness through music.
Hope brings this combination of notes home where she attempts to put them in order and see if it works. Unlucky for her roommate Brody as demons take over her, which leads us back to the start of the film.

There are other little things that are interesting in the film besides the stories. The little song the band plays which seemingly is an hommage to director Spider One
The lyrics go as this
If I were an insect
I’d be a spider
crawling down the wall,
trying to bite ya
8 legs, 8 legs, 8 legs, 8 legs
8 legs, 8 legs, 8 legs, 8 legs

If I were an insect
I’d be a spider

If I were a spider
I’d be an insect
living underground
a human reject

There is also an odd little Spoof movie that plays on television on one of the webs called “Big Baby”. This story follows a grown man in a onesie and a baby mask stalking his old babysitters. Hmm, who else wears a mask and stalks a babysitter?

Spider One does a decent job here with Allergoria. The stories are quick and short. These are less of a film, but rather fragmented shorts pieced together as a film. That said, Spider unlike his brother doesn’t polarize the horror community. His directorial debut, although interesting, may get overlooked in a shuffle on Shudder. It is still worthy of checking out.
By Chris Hammond

On-Demand and Streaming on Shudder August 2, 2022

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