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Prey

Critic:

Jason Knight

|

Posted on:

3 Mar 2022

Film Reviews
Prey
Directed by:
Ben Poppy, Kory Sean Williams
Written by:
Ben Poppy
Starring:
Jordan Turk, Phill Webster, Pat Dynowska, Dontae Nicholas Lindsay
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A man receives an unexpected visit from a stranger who tries to convince him to take his own life.

 

A man is in his home, by himself. Suddenly, there is a knock at the door and the man who enters the property claims to be a future version of himself and that the time has come for him to end his life, because there is no reason for him to go on living. The younger man refuses to accept either, however the visitor insists that he is who he says he is and that there is no point in his (their) life, leaving suicide as the best option.

 

Suicide is the main theme in this short, bleak, tense drama. The audience is introduced to the life of a sad and troubled individual (or maybe two individuals) who has hit bottom rock. The story follows this man as he has dramatic conversations and arguments with his future self regarding whether their life really has no meaning and whether death is truly a solution. The situation is quite extraordinary: a person is talking to another person who say that they are the same person but from the future and that their life is pointless and must come to an end. The viewer will most likely wonder what is going on here: is that person really from the future? Is the younger man losing his mind? Is someone playing a joke on him? Additionally, there is the question which is whether he is going to commit suicide. It is revealed that he has gone through (and is going through) very hard times and that apparently, there is no future for him.

 

The screenplay does a successful job in establishing a desperate situation and pointing out major factors that lead to suicide, including the loss of loved ones, loneliness and the belief that one has failed at everything. The atmosphere is rather downbeat throughout and the plot is intriguing.

 

Filming was done in black-and-white and Henry Meredith's cinematography creates a grim feeling that goes well with the subject matter. The music by Ryan Bridgewater is tense and dramatic and accompanies the scenes effectively. There is a scene that includes the reading of a poem and contains creative sound techniques and there are flashbacks that reveal information about the main character's past.

 

The acting is very strong and Turk is quite convincing as an angry, suicidal man who also believes that there might still be hope in his life. Webster is great as the determined 'older man' who is convinced that his life has no meaning and must end.

 

This is not an uplifting story, with the subject of suicide constantly present and there is a great deal of profanity. This short raises awareness of suicidal tendencies and mental health and encourages people who are going through similar experiences as the protagonist to seek help and as a result, this is a memorable viewing that should be recognised.

About the Film Critic
Jason Knight
Jason Knight
Short Film