Mute Witness

Director: Anthony Waller
Screenwriters: Anthony Waller

Institute History

  • 1995 Sundance Film Festival


With one twist after another, involving the Russian mafia, blood-caked knives, garbage bags of body parts, and plenty of blood, both real and staged, you may get queasy, but you will not be bored with Mute Witness.

Using Moscow as its eerie backdrop, this is a tale about three unsuspecting Americans who find themselves in a dangerous situation out of their control. One of them, Billie, is a mute; she can hear but cannot speak, let alone scream. She works as a special-effects makeup artist on a low-budget film. Accidentally locked in the studio one night, she witnesses the making of a snuff film. The events that ensue are just a leaping-off point for her night of terror. As her friends try to help her, they, too, are trapped in the web of confusion and fear.

Mute Witness begins with a wild film-within-a-film death scene, but that is a mere hint of what is in store. Be prepared to be relentlessly ricocheted from laughter to terror. Director Anthony Waller gleefully uses every trick in the book with relish. Combining references to other films, filmmaking techniques, and classic genre trickery, Mute Witness is an exhilarating hybrid of a horror film.

— John Cooper

Screening Details

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