It isn’t often that we see a film that could still be considered to be a silent film. One of the last well-known examples of a silent film, might well be The Artist (2011). But the short film Munchausen (2013) shows that there’s no reason why filmmakers shouldn’t use the format of the silent film these days. It tells the story of the enormous struggles of a mother letting go of her son.
Ari Aster might sound more than a little familiar to some, since his debut as a feature film director is currently in cinemas under the name of Heriditary (2018), a horror that some critics called the most horrifying film in years. But like the American independent filmmaker Richard Linklater once stated:
The biggest misconception is, people see someones first film and they think that is what they did on their first day as a filmmaker.
In the case of Ari Aster, a look at his imdb page reveals that he already made seven short films before he started directing his feature. But even these seven short films are probably just a portion of the work he actually did as a filmmaker.
Already in this short film we see a promising film director with a lot of talent. At first the film seems to suggest a bright future for the son, who is leaving the house to study abroad, until the film flips the story around. The cinematography is not only beautiful, but also fitting. Colors almost pop out of the screen to create a sense of warmth and happiness that seems at times so much over the top, that there is something might be off. When the film takes a darker turn, the colors reflect this darkness in the deep blue color palet.
While the emotions itself are played out more than a little big at times by the actors, almost in a way that reflects a silent film style acting, the feeling of sadness isn’t any less during the end of the short. The music plays an important part in that sense, using it’s soundtrack to convey an extreme palet of emotions, but also to express sounds in music to generate a gripping moment, when the mother character suddenly jumps out of bed out of sheer frigh
We wish you a fulfilling watching experience.
Credits Cast Liam Aiken, Bonnie Bedelia, David Purdham Written and directed by Ari Aster Produced by Alejandro De Leon Director of Photography Pawel Pogorzelski Composer Daniel Walter