The Marvel villian character Venom is meant to show us the darkest side of having superpowers.  This new guerrilla-style short film Truth in Journalism asks the question, “what would happen if the animal took over?” True Blood‘s Ryan Kwanten takes on the role of iconic Marvel villain Venom in the new guerrilla-style short film Truth in Journalism, directed by Knights of Badassdom filmmaker Joe Lynch.

The lines between fan films and professional work blur when you get to this level.  The gritty black-and-white tale is presented as found footage of a journalist-turned-vigilante who wants a documentary crew to immortalize his achievements, and isn’t clear on the concept of right and wrong himself.

The roughly 16-minute short was produced by Adi Shankar, whose credits include the big-screen films The Grey, Killing Them Softly, and the comic-book adaptation of Dredd starring Karl Urban. Last year, he produced another rogue short, Dirty Laundry, based on the Marvel character The Punisher, starring Thomas Jane (who played the character in the 2004 feature film.)

The short is set in the mid-to-late 1980’s.  Lynch’s film borrows not just from the Marvel universe, but spoofs the disturbing 1992 Belgian crime faux-documentary Man Bites Dog, about a serial killer whose twisted spree is accompanied by a film crew. It’s dark, both visually and thematically, and there are parts of it that are pretty horrifying – so if you’re sensitive to that, be warned now.

It’s a superhero movie, of sorts.  And while there isn’t much that’s uplifting about it, it’s a remarkable piece of filmmaking and resonates.

See what you think.

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