Glorious (2022)


Glorious is streaming now on Shudder.

Beware the horrors that lurk behind a public toilet glory hole. That simple sentence may make you think Glorious is a queer horror rooted in the notion of cruising, bodily fluids and secretive rendezvous. However, while Glorious does indeed carry queer undertones, its soul lies in the science fiction horror of H.P. Lovecraft.

As Mark Twain once wrote, “When ill luck begins, it does not come in sprinkles, but in showers”, and for Wes (Ryan Kwanten), this statement could not be closer to the truth. We meet Wes following a challenging break-up with his girlfriend, his car his temporary home as he attempts to deal with his guilt. Sweaty, dirty and smelly, Wes pulls into a small isolated park with a public toilet for some much-needed TLC. However, as he finds nourishment in a bottle of vodka, his day, week, and year are about to go from bad to worse as he enters the toilet block only to hear a mysterious voice (J.K Simmons) calling to him from the locked stall next door.


Rebekah McKendry’s creative slice of science fiction/horror cleverly uses its delightfully grungy public toilet location to explore a range of themes, from guilt to isolation and theology. Here the concept of praying to a gentle, all-knowing God for help during our darkest times is turned on its head in a genuinely engaging slice of sci-fi/horror. The result is a dark, bold and blood-soaked comedy/horror rooted in concepts of karma and belief. While McKendry’s movie may feel like it shouldn’t work, given the restrictions of its location and its simple premise, it does! This is partly due to Kwanten and Simmons’ outstanding performances as they play with Todd Rigney, Joshua Hull and Ian McKendry’s deliciously dark screenplay. But at its heart, the success comes from Rebekah McKendry’s gloriously lit grubby location where a man on his knees in puddles of urine and sick makes contact with an omnipotent toilet-bound god.


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