12 Jun 2022
Tom Rainn, James Coutsavlis, Chloe Mitchell, Ian Ray White
The writer-director Michael Houghton believes in continuously experimenting and making gripping movies so that he can keep the audience engaged with the content even with the limited resources available. The title of the short film-The Burglary in white font appearing on the black screen has connotations of hope, simplicity and determination of Seth (Tom Rainn) to find the real culprit of loot that took place in his flat.
The plot of the creative piece revolves around the burglary of Seth's flat and the struggles against the flat mate, the police and the tower block in which he lives to regain his stolen possessions and look for intruders.
The cinematographer Rose McLaughlin captures the tension, conflict, and fear the protagonist is experiencing with mid and tracking shots. The grey yellowish and red colour palette, dim lighting, eerie sound, a messy set design, dialogues, costume and makeup -all these elements complements the psychological thriller keeping the viewers hooked to it eagerly waiting to know about the conclusion of the film. A very well written dream sequence/nightmare by the filmmaker gives the required push to the narrative so that the audience gets time to figure out what the central character is up to and help with achieving his dramatic need. The song chosen by Michael Houghton played when the credits roll in is strong and distinct and it reiterates the genre as well as the subject matter of the movie.
In terms of performance, Tom Rainn plays Seth who is simple person disturbed by the sudden occurrence and tries very hard to normalize the situation. Rainn depicts a range of emotions through his facial expression and eyes and using minimum dialogues as per the demand of the script. The actor could effectively balance between being expressive and impassive.
James Coutsavlis as Joel appears to be a grey shade character from the very start of the film. Coutsavlis displays his acting skills to intensify the thrill and suspense element in the story as it moves towards the closure of the cinematic piece.
Chloe Tazia is the flirty female cop who adds the much needed comic element to the storyline providing some enjoyment away from the discomfort and a gloomy environment for the audience.
Ian Ray White is the male policeman who is a no nonsense person and wants to concentrate on solving the mystery of the robbery. White uses voice modulation and laughter to instill a sense of mystery in the minds of the viewers.
The Burglary demonstrates the power of psyche and the right way to manage the thoughts and apply it towards the productive duties. The short film talks about making a conscious decision of trusting people carefully and minimize the chances of being hurt/ cheated.
The director along with his creative team has given the film an open ended climax so that the audience can interpret the same as per their understanding of the movie.
In my opinion this short film needs subtitles especially in the scenes which have loud background sounds to increase the impact on the viewers.