I recently had the opportunity to screen a short film called Latched, which was the opening film at the TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) Short Cuts 06 Program this year (2017). Latched is a seventeen-minute fantasy/horror film that was directed by Justin Harding and Rob Brunner.
Latched centers around a woman named Alana and her fourteen-month-old son Bowen. Alana is a dance choreographer that's looking for some inspiration. So, Alana decides that she and Bowen are going to go stay at an island cottage. Since it's in the offseason Alana only has to share the island with her neighbor Peter, a nice, but rather strange older man. Least, that's everyone Alana thought was on the island.
I was seriously impressed with the story that Justin Harding came up with. In the seven-teen-minute runtime, you get a complete story that has a bit of miss direct, a false scene of calm and a pretty cool twist. All said and done, it was a pleasant surprise of imagination and originality.
The playthrough was good, but the pace of the film is a bit slow. That's not to say the pace was a bad thing because it's not. The pace was actually the key to the unfolding of the story. If it wasn't for a slow build up I don't think the end would have been as good.
I thought the cast, which was Alana Elmer, Bowen Harding, Peter Higginson and Jarrett Siddall all did a really good job.
Between the work of Rhonda Causton (special makeup effects) and Kerosene (animation & visual effects), everything looked great and the animation blended into the scenes well.
Something else that helped Latched turn out as good as it did was the music. All of the original music was composed by Vivien Villani. The music he came up with was a great fit for the movie and heightened the emotion of the scenes.