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Review: URBAN FEARS (2019)

A while back, I reviewed a film called Night, the debut film from Nicholas Michael Jacobs. It was not a good review. Well, despite that, I got a screener of his follow-up, Urban Fears. And, while there are still issues, it is a major improvement.

Urban Fears is an anthology film consisting of three linked tales with a prologue and final segment to tie it all up. The prologue involves a YouTuber finding out a cursed e-mail is all too real. Something we’ll come back to later.

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“Sundown”, the first actual segment of Urban Fears, involves James Morris (Brian Jacobs) a young thief who ignores his father’s advice to be in by sundown. When his partner in crime is a no show, he breaks into an apartment building by himself. He ends up being stalked across town by a Jason like killer in a camo mask.

An exchange between James and his father leads into the second segment, “Inanimate”. Annie (Alexis Beacher) is house-sitting. She’s told not to go into a certain room in the basement. After a friend tells her an urban legend connected to the house and involving a doll made from human skin, her curiosity gets the best of her. The result plays out like the Karen Black segment of Trilogy Of Terror.

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Max (Nicholas Michael Jacobs), Annie’s boyfriend, is trying to call her, but she’s not answering for some reason. So he checks his messages and sees somebody has sent him the chain e-mail from the prologue. He ignores it and ends up being stalked by Violet (Gianna Jacobs), the spirit of a girl killed in a texting while driving accident. Can Shane (Shawn C. Phillips, Dead Ant, Bloody Nun) help him survive?

Urban Fears ends with a Battle Royale type brawl involving the antagonists from all three segments.

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Jacobs is to be commended for making Urban Fears a much more complex and interesting film than his debut. There are still issues with pacing and dialogue. The lack of gore effects is also an issue. If you stab somebody in a white shirt, the blood is going to show, and you need to show that.

If you like microbudget films, Urban Fears is an OK time killer. I’m curious to see how Jacob’s next film turns out.

Urban Fears will play Landmark’s Ritz Five movie theatre on Monday, September 30 and possibly a few festival dates before going to Amazon Prime sometime in the fall. You can get updates via Facebook.

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