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Glorious (2022)

Given that I know very little about H. P. Lovecraft and the source material that a lot of these adaptations usually stem from, I always find myself drawn into the cosmic and otherworldly aspects of their tales, and 'Glorious' is no exception. This mind-bending story (whilst limited to the bathroom stalls of a road size toilet) gives the scope and discomfort of the unknowable and incomprehensible that this Lovecraftian horror subgenre is closely associated with. This film is solely held up by the fantastic performance from Ryan Kwanten as Wes, being the only onscreen actor for the majority of this films runtime. Kwanten is an actor I'm only really familiar with due to his time on Australia soap opera 'Home and Away'. The only other notable character is the mysterious figure in a bathroom stall. We only hear this characters voice throughout, that is until we get the slightest glimpse of his true form in the closing act. I was amazed to learn after my watch that this character is voiced by the incredibly talented J. K. Simmons. His robotic and almost naive like nature very much reminded me of the Kryten character from the British sitcom 'Red Dwarf'. I have to admit that I wasn't immediately invested in this film and it took a good 30 minutes for me to finally get to grips with the tone and direction it was taking. It's not very often I find my self wanting to call it a day on a film without finishing it once I've started. That being said, once things progressed with a darker and more horror centric tone I was immediately engaged, and I have to say that the pay off was definitely worth sticking around for. This film featured one of the more surprising and unexpected story developments in the closing act that I have seen for some time. These closing act revelations not only amplified my overall experience with the film but made me completely reanalyse everything that had come before it. One thing I found hard to see past was how glaringly obvious the terrible CGI effects were towards the closing act. These CGI effected scenes don’t necessarily compromise the events unfolding on screen, it was however immediately noticeable to me that the standard of the final product wasn't great. The creatures grand reveal I mentioned earlier, although brief was very creative. The final form it takes looks extremely hell bound and otherworldly, and I really appreciated the design that went into this character. I would have liked to have seen more of this, however, along with the CGI, I have to assume budgetary issues came into play here. With an excellent performance from its small cast, multiple unexpected story developments and a perfect balance of horror and humour, although unlikely that I will ever revisit 'Glorious' again, it's still a very strong recommendation. As with most modern day Lovecraftian inspired adaptations, if the story doesn't captivate you, then the synonymous pink and purple colour palette certainly will.



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