Directed and written by Azam Awan Starring Taha Khan and Waleed Khawaja Short Film Review by Rachel Pullen
We all do desperate things when times get hard; steal, beg, fall into a pit of despair and lay around crying because you have no prospects or friends...maybe that last one is just me, but do we befriend a psychopath? why not!
Short film Gloom is the story of a 20 year old man who is struggling with his demons and unemployment. Now his main demon is that little white powder cocaine, he loves the stuff, like the poor man's Scarface, he quaffs it down whenever possible. But as times get harder he turns to theft, trying to rob someone in order to fund his ever-growing drug addition.
But like most robberies it does not really go to plan as he and his victim shoot each other at the same time, resulting in a wounded standoff with a reasonably priced hatchback car between them, not exactly the pay-off our leading man was hoping for I can imagine.
What results is the two men conversing, as the victim, using his wisdom and charm, unravels the reasons behind what has led this man to attack and try to rob him, it's almost like they become friends, with matching gun wounds to show their newfound BFF.
This unexpected buddy picture is short in a variety of styles, sometimes in colour sometimes in black and white, with close ups used to give the feeling of intensity as well as wide angled shots to show isolation and despair, its easy to see that director and writer Azam Awan has a talent for creating atmosphere even on what appears to be a tight budget.
Our two leading roles played by Taha Khan and Waleed Khawaja, are engaging and compelling to watch, each of the actors give a sense of character and personality to the role in a very short period of time, confidently diving between comedy as well as a more sombre tone when they meet.
As a short film, Gloom has a lot to offer, its script is witty and well thought out, the small budget does not make for unpleasant watching as locations have been well thought out and used to their advantage, and to top this offer if you enjoy a good plot twist then this short is definitely something to check out.