After a car breakdown, a couple takes shelter into a seedy bar. They soon realize it was not the best thing to do.
From writer/director/producer Chris Rakotomamonjy comes the French short film, The Night at the End of Days—a roughly ten-minute film that is bold, brazen, shocking and a touch sci-fi.
As with most short films, we are privy to but a taste of the director’s actual vision; it’s a condensed, contracted film usually entertaining a far broader concept. The Night at the End of Days does exactly that here, dropping us off in what could very well be the end of a feature film.
The film opens with a stranded “couple” entering a bar in the middle of nowhere, France. The local unsavoury characters are unfortunately a little hornier than usually and the film quickly takes a dark, foreboding turn towards the darker side of humanities older and more sordid pastimes. The film then takes a turn for the weird, with something akin to that creepy outdoor cult scene from The Void (2016). I’ll stop here to avoid spoilers.
The production value was good, but not great. The SFX were very hit-and-miss, sometimes losing the suspension of disbelief with poorly angled shots or cheap effects. I personally didn’t mind this too much, but I have seen cheaper done better. All of the other technical aspects were done very well, the lighting, sound, acting, and cinematography all being decent—it’s a solid, well-constructed film.
The acting is far above par for a low-budget indie short—I’d go so far as to say that it was pretty good—even the fight choreography was passable. The film holds the attention of the viewer from quick start to end and is, like mentioned earlier, more like an ending to a feature film than a stand-alone short; a feature film that I would be very interested in watching. The characters and backstory seem really cool, the plot to my taste and the stakes just right. I would have loved to have seen more…I still do.
This short is still doing its festival rounds so if you are into those, try and catch it on a big screen–it’s being screened in Tokyo this summer. If that’s not your thing, wait for a streamable copy. Thanks for reading and as always, stay sordid. Trailer and poster below.
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