At this year’s Eerie Horror Film Festival (www.eeriehorrorfilmfestival.com) the award for Best Screenplay was given to “Redwood,” a dark tragedy set in a fantasy-esque woods, written by David Blair and co-written by Adam Pitman.
“Redwood” tells the story of Joe, a lonely carpenter who has built his house around a giant redwood tree. He lives with his son, Cole, a toe-headed boy who walks with a limp. When a mysterious and beautiful drifter named Avie comes to town, the two are immediately taken by her kindness and invite her to stay the night. But soon her treacherous nature is revealed and during a violent thunderstorm, she and Joe engage in an equally violent confrontation, resulting in the death both Avie and Cole. Because of his shady reputation amongst the townspeople (Joe was accused of murdering his own wife several years prior), Joe’s panic leads him to cover up his crime and he carves out a tomb within the giant redwood tree. He places the bodies inside, concealing the evidence of his wrongdoing, and seals it up. As the seasons change, so does the tree: the evergreen needles shed and are replaced with blood-red ones. And its not long before a haunting presence emerges from within the sealed tomb causing Joe to not only question whether Avie was actually dead, but his sanity as well. Gradually Joe’s guilt and sadness at the death of his son slowly destroys him, and he seals off the room containing the tree trunk tomb. But not even walls can block his misdeeds and soon subtle knocks and faint voices are heard from behind the wall. What follows is a horrifying descent into a world of ghosts, wolves, madness and eventual redemption. “Redwood” is a haunted house story for the ages, a tale as beautiful as it is terrifying.