No great cinematic skill is required to scare the bejesus out of people. As Hollywood demonstrates on a biweekly basis, any caffeinated hack can unleash a crimson torrent of zombies, vampires, or serial killers, creepy music, nails-on-blackboard sound effects, and oozing, dripping gore. But to really get under our skin and inside our head takes a certain amount of creativity and subtlety especially in 10 minutes or less. "Independent Exposure Halloweird 2007," Microcinema's annual program of discomfiting short films culled from New Zealand, Europe, and the U.S., is one heady package of artsy angst. A mother's haunting memories of her lost son seep out of the walls of an actual abandoned house in Whisper, while Android 207 unfolds in a vaguely familiar yet spooky world created with stop-motion animation. Drug of Choice wallows lovingly in post-breakup inertia and depression, and Morning Lemon shocks us with the horror that ensues from using modern communications devices. Laugh a little, flinch a little, die a little. Just keep telling yourself it's only a movie.
Thu., Oct. 25, 7:15 & 9:15 p.m., 2007