The term “a guilty conscience can eat you alive” takes a literal meaning in Christian Bachini’s cringeworthy short horror film.

In the middle of the COVD-19 pandemic, Chris is a self-centered chef who is forced to stay at home and he’s known for a notorious reputation. When a friend calls him in hopes of finding the pandemic as a means for Chris to repent and redeem himself, the effort proves to be futile. However, while watching a horror movie, Chris finds the masked figure in the film talking to Chris and giving him a choice: repent for his actions or pay the consequences.

This short film is a horror fan’s dream. It has it all: isolation, masked figures, jump scares, body horror, and gore galore. Christian Bachini has come up with a brilliant film that pays homage to Italian horror. The film doesn’t have a protagonist but revolves around an arrogant chef (played by Bachini) who could care less about others as long as his ego is in check. However, it is when he is watching a horror movie where a masked figure maliciously kills his victim that things start to pick up.

The film soon sees Chris torture himself in such shocking ways, from beating his hand with a meat tenderizer to literally defining “a guilty conscience can eat you alive”. There are loads of the crimson all over the place. It gets very cringeworthy and it is clear that this film is not for those with weak stomachs and hearts. However, horror hounds will enjoy seeing the pain and torment Bachini puts himself through in this and those who love the “body horror” subgenre mixed with cannibalism will be cheering Bachini on with this film.

Escalation is an excellent short film that will attract the top-level horror hounds and those with weak stomachs and hearts will most likely want to avoid this film. But this is one reviewer in the former as it is tops!


A KangXploitation Studios production. Director: Christian Bachini. Producer: Christian Bachini. Writers: Christian Bachini and Charlie Cooper. Cinematography: Christian Bachini. Editing: Christian Bachini.

Cast: Christian Bachini, Derek Blakely, Charlie Cooper, Giulia Serafini, Lucy Chun Yan.