Passage short film review

★★★

Directed by: Christin Baker

Written by: Hillary Esquina

Starring: Shannan Leigh Reeve, Mandahla Rose, Nicole Pacent, Ian Ampoyo, Kitty Swink

Film Review by: Jason Knight

Still Image from Passage

A secret organization interacts with the spirits of the deceased.


Agent Ali Prader (Reeve) works as a Level 3 operative for an institute that deals with paranormal entities. Ali has the ability to see and interact with people who have passed away and it is her duty to help those who are stuck in the world of the living move into the afterlife. She lives with her daughter and often socializes with the ghost of her deceased wife Kate (Pacent). One day she meets her new colleague Diana (Rose) and things get complicated.


This short sci-fi film has a plot that resembles Ghostbusters: a group of individuals dealing with the paranormal. Aside from the spirits, the story also explores Ali's past, her personal life, the relationship she has with her daughter and Kate and the relationship she develops with Diana.


The characters are interesting. Reeve leads the film well with her portrayal of a tough, determined woman, with a history in the army and CIA. The supporting cast do a good job, with Rose rather convincing as the intelligent, rookie agent.


The highlights occur when the spirits of the dead appear. At times they look like normal humans and at others they give the impression that they have jumped out of a malfunctioning television. Their voices have been modified in order to sound otherworldly. There is also a possession scene that is rather enjoyable, with the victim's eyes turning white. The music used during these sequences, effectively accompanies the situations.


The film also explores lesbianism. Ali and some of the other characters are lesbians and there are a few scenes that show two women kissing and expressing their feelings towards each other.


Director Baker creates wonderful establishing and bird's-eye view shots and the editing makes great use of fast cutting and dissolve techniques.


Although the idea of humans communicating with the deceased is appealing, the story does not focus enough on that, choosing instead to spend a great deal of time concentrating on Ali's life and how she interacts with the people around her. By doing so, this film becomes more of a drama than a science fiction adventure. Nevertheless, it makes an enjoyable viewing.


#JasonKnight


You can rent Passage in its entirety as UK Film Channel - Click here.