Title: Red Lake
Director: George J. Bicknell
Starring: Kristin Marie Wilson, AJ Magoon, Steven Alonte
Runtime: 15 mins
What It Is: A woman spends her afternoon attempting to escape from reality by engaging in mindless tasks at home.
What We Think: This short film was an enticing game of Connect the Dots that prompted a re-watch to make sure nothing was missed. Technically speaking the cinematography was soft and dreamlike look. Narratively this short is cohesive and compelling. In similar reviews involving one setting films, I’ve mentioned how hard it is to execute a good story that makes sense. This film does an amazing job telling a story through space, not just the characters. There is no issue of talking heads or overt props. The way the mother, Kristin Marie Wilson, interacts with her surroundings, tastefully reveals the shocker and causes an abrupt wave of emotions. Over the course of the film, it’s unclear as to whether this woman suffers from something such as agoraphobia. There are even moments that cause you to feel bad for her. But once you realize what she is doing, all sympathy goes out the window and she becomes another person contributing to a greater more devastating issue in society. From compassion and sympathy to hatred and disgust. All in one room.
Our Grade: A, This film carries a handful of film festival official selections and it’s easy to tell why. Some of the best suspenseful films are told when the audience knows what’s going on and the characters don’t. In this case, the character knows more than you and while it takes a bit of time to come to that realization, once you do it sends chills down your spine.