Glorious – Fantasia ’22 review

Sad-sack heartbroken Wes (Ryan Kwanten) pulls off the highway at a roadside rest-stop to grab a candy bar, straighten his head out, and… what the hell, maybe burn all his possessions and drink himself unconscious. Clearly he has issues. But when he wakes up hungover and rushes into the grotty public toilet to vomit his guts out, things go from bad to worse. Because his stall has a glory hole cut into its partition. And on the other side of that glory hole is the corporeal form of an ancient Lovecraftian nightmare god (JK Simmons), who needs a little favour…

This was clearly conceived and shot (by director Rebekah McKendry and writers Todd Rigney, Joshua Hull and David Ian McKendry) during the pandemic, because for the most part it’s a two-handed argument between Kwanten and the disembodied voice of Simmons – with occasional flashbacks and hallucinations. As such, Glorious could have gotten old very quickly. But it’s a testament to its inventive staging, surprisingly strong visuals, smart script and amped-up dialogue that it almost (almost) justifies its 79 minute runtime. (That said, more films should be ok coming in at the one-hour mark! Host taught us that!)

In any case, Glorious is a fun addition to both the single-location and cosmic horror genres, and is recommended for fans of such similar fare as Sean O’Grady’s 2021 We Need To Do Something.

Glorious played the Fantasia International Film Festival on 21 July, and comes to streaming on Shudder later this year.

A teaser:

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