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In the Land of Moonstones Short Film Review

★★★ Stars

Directed by: #NicolaRose

Written by: #NicolaRose

This image has seemingly been spit onto two halves; the top half shows a girl standing on a beach, only metres away from the sea, with her back turned to face the camera. The bottom half shows the same girl but this time sitting with a boy on a part bench, a mass scene of greenery can be spotted behind them as they look at each other.

In the Land of Moonstones is an award winning short film depicting the travels of a young girl (Natalie Keating) as she looks back on her first love, Boris (Rand McAvoy,) as well as her close friendship with her interestingly elegant grandmother (Valeriya Korennaya.)

The writing of this film, by Nicola Rose, is simply beautiful. Each line has a poetic ring to it and, in this way, the words truly bring the story to life. There is a lot of meaning in the presentation of this short and the core of it is placed within the script, rather than how the script is carried out through acting methods. I adore writing that sticks in your mind, words that grasp onto your heart when you least expect it; Rose’s writing undoubtedly ties a soft, gentle ribbon around the hearts of viewers.

In between scenes of the actors in character, there are snippets of brightly coloured cartoons that portray the unfolding scene in a different medium. These cartoons, by Jennifer Himes, can be seen to represent something a lot deeper than what meets the eye. After delving into interviews surrounding this film, I found that Rose stated: “I wanted to make a moment about the incredibly awkward, super-intense moment right between childhood and adolescence.” A bolt of realisation immediately struck through my body after processing that information. The frames that are completely filled by the cast embody that particular side of entering adolescence, whereas the cartoons easily connect to the childhood they are about to leave behind. This was a wonderful aspect to suddenly become aware of!

The acting itself from each cast member is seamless, the connections seen between the characters are raw and perfectly suited for the story. Young actors Natalie Keating and Rand McAvoy are absolutely spectacular; their onscreen presence is incredible and the atmosphere surrounding them shows just how well they are both able to delve into the created mindset of their character. I love the vibrancy within the relationship of Keating’s character and her grandmother, played by Korennaya. Their bond appears natural, something entirely uplifting and peaceful. The friendship creates a captivating contrast to the somewhat cracked relationship the audience follows with the two younger characters.

In the Land of Moonstones is definitely a must-watch short film for a wide range of age groups – it has the capacity to resonate with an older generation of individuals, letting them revisit that particular messy stage in their life, as well as resonating with a younger generation who can presently see themselves in the characters.


1 comentario

Nicola Rose
Nicola Rose
23 sept 2020

Alicia, thank you so much for this lovely and glowing review! You are such a thoughtful writer and your observations are so touching. I am so lucky I got to direct this film, and I'm honored by what you wrote.

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