Producer: Rhoda Jordan
Writer/Director: Eric Jordan
Music: Bilvox Neidlinger
Editor: Randy Stoudt
Based on a short story by Jack Ketchum, “Mail Order” is the story of Howard, who makes his money from selling S & M tapes. It opens with him on the phone in his apartment bemoaning the fact that it isn’t as easy as it used to be to make these types of short films anymore. He also goes on to mention that his father would never have approved of his business. But his father did leave him a sizable inheritance & while he’s on the phone he orders whoever is on the line (His Accountant, perhaps)? to move some funds to various accounts in different countries. Upon being asked what he’s going to do that evening, he replies “Stay home & watch a movie”.
We’re then taken to a flashback (Some years earlier) in which we see him meeting a young lady by a pool. After some ice cream he invites her over to his place where he (Apparently) introduces her to Cocaine. Then they watch a videotape of a young man slitting his wrists. She asks him why he likes this kind of thing to which he replies that “Lots of people like it”. He claims “Everything gets boring” and he just “Wants to break the f*ck out”. They then have sex during which she slaps him and when he asks “Why” she asks him if she’s “Going too fast for him”. We’re then taken back to the present where he is watching a tape of the woman tied to a bed with two men in Pig masks with knives slowly brushing them across her body, leaving a trail of what appears to be blood over her body. but I couldn’t tell where the blood was coming from as it seems they weren’t cutting her. He makes himself a drink as he tries to remember her name as we return to the flashback where she gets up after the film he made screaming at him. He protests, claiming he thought she’d like it. She then screams that since his father is about to die and he’s going to get that inheritance, he won’t need her anymore. She then leaves & doesn’t return.
Back to the present & he remembers her name is Greta. He tries to contact her but she has apparently dropped out of sight. “Some Weeks Later” (As the title card tells us) he is walking down the street when he passes by a woman he recognizes as Greta. He stops her & after a quick reintroduction, they go out for dinner. Over small chat he finds out that she is unattached & judging by the leer on his face she knows what his next question will be. Unfortunately for him, Greta has been planning this meeting for a long time…
Director Eric Shapiro shows he knows how to get good performances from his actors & despite the (Obviously) low budget he had to work with, the film looks pretty good. He also wrote the script which smartly leaves a lot to the imagination. But we still get that Howard (Lee Schall) is a scumbag & Greta (Cerris Morgan-Moyer) is corrupted by him before being exploited by him for profit as he had put the tape he had made of her online for sale. His comeuppance while not surprising in it’s execution is still gratifying in a sense because he’s such a dirtbag.
The biggest problem I had with “Mail Order” was the choice of having most of Howard’s dialog echo through the films short running time. It made it hard to understand what he was saying since the sound is a bit muddled. That and the awful toupee he wore in the flashback scenes. But neither of these are deal breakers. It’s a quick little shocker with a predictable but satisfying ending just the same.
Mail Order (2011) (Short Film)