Two strange, reclusive sisters quietly await the advent of their secretly twisted plan. Inspired by true events.
Written By: Jim Vendiola
Directed By: Jim Vendiola
I love Indie low budget horror! Not for the well planned screamers or the ultra dark rooms demanding an excellent camera to get the shot; rather for the slow burn most offer up in place of a budget. I've always found that independent horror goes for the atmosphere, trying to get under your skin. Case in point? Violets. Loosely based on true events, the viewer gets a glimpse into the world of the not quite right. Those oddball folks you joke about in an uncomfortable way? Right here front and center. Showing you exactly why they make you nervous. Writer / director Jim Vendiola brings to the screen the people that make you shiver; when you're alone thinking of ways to lessen the burden of their existence. Violets is the slow creeper that leaves you speechless until you helplessly watch the end credits roll. How much truth is portrayed in this short film? I'll leave that for you to find out for yourself.
Technically, there's not much to write about. Violets is an ultra low budget film. The lensing is done in a simple way, using a lot of natural light to compose most shots. Overall things look pretty good save a few shots scattered throughout. If I were in the editing room the majority of the greenhouse scene would have been left on the cutting room floor. When it comes to "dolly-styled" shots I've always said that unless it's an action scene... make it perfect or leave it out. When it comes to low budget, don't go for the potentially cool shots... go for what you know will work. The audio, although not a lot, was good enough to hear but simply felt awkward and a little tinny to my amateur ears. Where Violets does shine is in the acting. Cassandra Jones and Annie Siffermann did fantastic jobs playing the eerie sisters. Their expressions (or lack of) just seemed to completely play into the building dread of the film. The fact they actually look like sisters was the icing on the cake.
My one big problem with Violets is that not a lot is actually explained, and the character development is almost non-existent. I understand this is a short film; not a lot can be done in a few short minutes. For people like me however, that don't know of the events that inspired this film; I ended up with a lot of confusion. My personal opinion is that a little time should have been spent on the story itself. We don't all know what inspired this short and the film should have been made with that in mind.
At the end of the day, Violets does what it sets out to do. Creep us out. I highly recommend watching this to anyone interested in the genre. There's some good creepy fun waiting within the 14 minutes that make up the film. If character driven horror is your thing than check this out when you can. You'll be sorry... err... happy you did.
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