Sideworld: Terrors of the Sea (2022)
A mysterious offering which snuck up on me, Sideworld: Terrors of the Sea is, in crude, box-checking terms, a documentary with a horror slant. I’d be interested to know if something as formulaic as that is what its makers intended. I’ll bet it is not. Here be beasties as tales of nautical ghosts, curses and mermaids are told with a devotion to an ephemeral style.
Terrors of the Sea is a companion to Rubicon Films’ Sideworld: Haunted Forests of England. The burgeoning production house has also made two non-fiction feature films, Hex and The Droving, and director George Popov chairs and narrates the Sideworld duo. Now, fiction: what is and isn’t fiction and how much do you care? Terrors of the Sea could be subtitled “things drunk sailors claim” and while that’s fine, seamen have a saltier way with words than this film could hope to transmit in this format.
I like what they’re trying to do with the series (assuming Sideworld: Haunted Forests of England is the same style) and would definitely watch another in the hope that it builds on this. It’s a film with niche appeal, which within that will probably really work for a select few, just not me so much. 5/10