Charles Hall, screenwriter for Serpents Lullaby, weaves a tale of love and sorrow that turns to desperation in this short film that features very little dialogue, in fact, there are less than a dozen lines spoken.
The appeal (for me) and complexity of this award-winning thirteen minute short is in the filming, direction, and fabulous setting. The setting appears to be a very lovely private residence (mansion) in Sainte Agathe des Monts, Québec, Canada (the filming location), giving the film’s lead character an air of wealth. Of course, it is the filming and direction that takes this lovely setting and crafts it into a classic gothic horror with a present day sensibility.
The filming techniques used have an almost film noir look and a modern, but somewhat subdued, Ice Blue color palette resulting in a cold and dark mood, as it should be for this subject. The direction was exquisite in the use of unusual camera angles as well as close-up photography highlighting the mystery and suspense of the film. There were several critters used in the filming that made it that much more creepy (for me anyway, “Why did it have to be snakes?”), but were necessary for the telling of the tale.
The film feels predictable in where you think the story is going to go… Until the
twist. Actually there is more than one twist. Just when you think you know where it is going to go it veers away from that idea, and then delivers yet another twist. Serpents Lullaby is a heartbreaking story with a sad, but satisfying end.
Kudos to Patirica Chica and crew for creating a very smart horror short that is visually stunning and a delight to watch.
Below is the synopsis of Serpents Lullaby and a link to Patricia Chica’s website where you can learn more about her work.
Few people know the name of the eccentric woman living in the centuries-old mansion just outside of town. Even fewer have seen her face. But everyone has heard the stories. Rumors of a secret garden in her backyard where her children are buried. Some think she is simply a grieving mother seeking solitude. Others believe she’s a cold-blooded monster. When the empty baby’s crib in her home becomes too much for her to bear, she ventures out in public, and soon everyone will know the dark truth.
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