RENT-A-PAL will be available on Digital Download from 16th November, a disturbing psychological thriller about David (Brian Landis Folkins) a lonely bachelor caring for his ageing mother suffering from dementia (Kathleen Brady). Set in the 1990s, David is seeking a girlfriend via a video dating agency Video Rendezvous, which isn’t going well but he stubbles across Rent-A-Pal an interactive video tape where he meets Andy (Wil Wheaton) his ‘new best friend’ triggering a deterioration in his well being.
Taking care of his mom and living in her basement, David plays his Rent-A-Pal tape over and over and is totally absorbed by Andy’s charming coercive friendship but soon things get a little weird as the video interaction becomes more interactive, which starts to affect David whilst he is looking after his mother. Things actually take a turn for the better as he gets lucky at the dating agency and is introduced to a perfect match, fellow carer Lisa (Amy Rutledge), but this surprisingly causes a problem for David as he ends up in an awkward 3-way tryst.
Written, directed, produced and edited by Jon Stevenson, it’s an unnerving take on the oddball mother and son relationship, which automatically conjures comparisons of the most famous one of them all at the Bates Motel and it almost feels like a creepy horror homage to VHS (PAL) video tapes, with its intricate close ups inferring sinister inner workings of a now almost forgotten medium.
Run time: 1hr 48 min
Director: Jon Stevenson
Stars: Wil Wheaton, Brian Landis Folkins, Kathleen Brady, Amy Rutledge
Genre: Thriller / Horror