The universe has a favour to ask.
Shudder continues its winning streak this year with Rebecca McKendry’s cosmic horror comedy Glorious, that hits all the beats those sub genres require and more.
Ryan Kwanten plays the down on his luck Wes, who has come out of a relationship and not doing too well, shown by way of too many awkward messages on his exes answer phone & a Jack Daniels infused meltdown where he burns most of his possessions (including his pants). When he enters a public restroom to vomit (repeatedly) he finds himself in thrall to an unseen figure named Ghat (voiced by JK Simmons) who has grand cosmic plans for Wes.
Glorious is low budget / self-contained horror done right - big ideas in a small space that relies on its actors and ingenuity of the director to expand the confines of the space. Ryan Kwanten is up to the task, channeling some of his True Blood energy into Wes, a desperate, sweaty man riddled with insecurities. Kwanten is skilled at going broad but still be believable as a character, even when covered in copious amounts of blood and slime.
JK Simmons is the other part of this two header and he is equally good as the voice of Ghat, an all-knowing being that needs an offering from Wes in order to save the universe. Or maybe not. There are hints that this could all be in Wes’ strained mind. From there McKendry paints the screen with blood and pink Lovecraftian lights and skilfully uses the camera to supercede the small space.
I see this has been getting some mixed reviews online, but this hit the spot for me - equally funny, weird and inventive, the film winningly embraces the silliness of cosmic horror (don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of the genre but it is inherently silly).
4 cosmic glory holes out of 5.