Guillermo Del Toro is one of those lucky filmmakers, like Steven Spielberg and Tim Burton, whose personal obsessions naturally seem to align with mainstream movie-going audiences. From Chronos to Hellboy to his Oscar-nominated 2006 movie Pan’s Labyrinth, Del Toro’s movies are often macabre and frightening but they are leavened by his goofy sense of humor and his incredible visual imagination.
Prior to making his breakout debut feature Cronos, Del Toro directed a string of short films including his 1987 horror comedy Geometria, which displays both his sense of humor and some serious directing chops. Check out the short above and, as you watch, remember that the flick was reportedly made for about $1000.
Geometria opens with a recent widow haranguing her teenaged son about how he is flunking out of geometry. At the end of the fight, the son vows that he will never fail at the subject again. Instead of hitting the books or even hiring a tutor, though, the lad turns to black magic. Spoiler: this proves to be a bad idea.
After drawing a bloody pentagon on the floor, he summons a demon and requests it fulfill two wishes: to resurrect his recently deceased father and to help him not flunk geometry again. The creature, who looks a bit like Linda Blair from The Exorcist, grants the teen his first wish. Dear old dad does come back but in the form of a rotting zombie who immediately starts to feast on his mother’s neck. From there, as you might expect, things get much worse for the lad.
You can see the director’s cut of Geometria below. Sadly this clip doesn’t have subtitles though the image quality is much better.
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Jonathan Crow is a Los Angeles-based writer and filmmaker whose work has appeared in Yahoo!, The Hollywood Reporter, and other publications. You can follow him at @jonccrow.