Directed by: Junayed Alavi
Starring: Sayan Mondal
Short Film Review by: Rachel Pullen
Dreamodox Film Review
Remember that film with Bill Murray, where he does the same thing over and over and you think it’s gonna be a good movie but actually it sucked?...Oh yeah, Groundhog Day, anyway, I think director Junayed Alavi didn't think that movie sucked and decided that the concept could be the perfect inspiration for his own works, and so welcome to the stage his short film called Dreamodox.
Our leading man leads us into his world, a dream-like state where he is questioned by a faceless man; he holds a picture, two silhouetted people looking at an image also, he is barraged by questions about the image, but he cannot really remember, yet the faceless man continues, on and on.
Is it a dream? a memory? a drug-induced hallucination? He does not know, he clearly displays confusion, anxiety and fear within his inability to answer these basic questions.
His face is all cut up, his appearance displays the fear and anxiety we hear in his voice, his appearance makes the audience aware of this man’s troubled past, it gives us a connection to his past, we are given the idea that he has suffered deeper trauma, but this also opens the doors of more questions: who did this to him? did he do it himself? did the man asking him questions do it? was it Bill Murray?
We become caught up in his puzzle, and as they cycle continues, with every repetition of him seeing the same man asking him the same question, we notice new things, we start to piece together the small clues we are given, but all the while a ticking clock audio plays non-stop, causing more panic and anxiety, reminding us that time may be running out.
Sayan Mondal produces a sterling performance, strong and direct, we are immersed in his spectrum of emotions that he had to face in this role, he carried Dreamodox alone and while that may seem a daunting task for some, his confidence in his acting abilities is shining through as he is believable and genuine throughout.
And not unlike the hell that is Groundhog Day (I'm sorry, that's my opinion, don't come for me!) we are reminded that although it does not feel that way when we are in it, but everything comes to an end, even the worst nightmare.