REVIEWED BY CHARLES LONBERGER
This short film, from Bolivian cineaste Amy Hesketh, is a tongue-in-cheek take on the “Found Footage” genre that sprung into the cinematic consciousness with the release of The Blair Witch Project.
Deceptively and deliberately casual, designed to approximate a home movie, there is sophistication in its visual design, particularly in its foreground objects, distortions, and first-person perspectives, courtesy of a gopro attached to the head of the protagonist.. What is most intriguing about the directorial approach is how Hesketh objectifies herself by telling her tale at crucial moments through the eyes of the husband, thereby placing herself, via her character, in the third person.
The theme, of a husband strangling his wife under the influence of an evil folkloric doll that the couple had innocently bought at an open market, in compact form continues established Heskethian concerns, as the short concludes, yet again, with her own character’s demise. Perhaps practice makes perfect, but no one approximates being strangled better than this director/performer. Consequently, what could have been merely macabre becomes, in the process, a disturbing statement, as well.
As the husband, Erik Antoine is very effective, particularly at the moment that doll takes control of him while sitting at his computer. He communicates the moment of possession without benefit of closeup. With great imagination and dramatic force, Hesketh conveys his suicide entirely from a first person perspective.
At once cinematically satiric, yet, stylistically profound, this short is released as part of a Horror compilation.