So, in the early 90’s, MTV decided they needed to expand their programming. One of their first greatly successful experiments was an “unscripted show” that put a bunch of young people from all over the country into a single house that would film the events. The Real World became a phenomenon.
In the late 90’s, three young filmmakers were trying to make their first film…their original idea was a road movie which was then ruined by weather that would have made outdoor shooting really tough. The filmmakers came up with a horror movie idea that could be set in one location and mostly indoors.
The result the thriller Kolobos. Several reality show wannabes seeking fame show up at a home and goof around, but then things get serious. Not like on the Real World, where personalities clashed-not that clashes don’t happen- but rather the sudden terror that they are trapped in the house and it has a who lot of traps meant to kill them.
At the center of the film is Kyra, a withdrawn artist, who keeps seeing faceless killers. Has Kyra lost connection to reality? Is she the killer? Or is there someone else? Is the hulking scarred man real?
Long before Saw, Kolobus explored the potential of watching people suffer horribly for entertainment (and honestly, are less preachy about it, the filmmakers do clearly have fun coming up with crazy death traps). The film has decent gore effects, and the acting is passable for the horror genre.
So, why does nobody talk about the film? One of the first to toy with the idea of reality-TV based horror? Well, it got released directly to DVD…right before this little movie called the Blair Witch. Blair Witch ushered in the era of found footage and steam rolled right over Kolobos. Arrow films recently re-released the film on Blu-Ray (for the first time in HD, it had been out of print for some time otherwise).
I recommend the disc and the movie, it deserves wider recognition. A lost indie horror film from the late nineties, you really should check this one out.