When Emily, an elderly widowed woman, runs out of puzzles to complete she receives a strange package on her front porch. Little does she know it comes with a deadly surprise within. Some puzzles are never meant to be finished.
Directed by: Stephen Corron
Written by: Stephen Corron
Starring: Madge Levinson, Athena Prychodko
Growing old with another is an attribute of a relationship that one can look forward to in a successful marriage, but can be painful when a spouse passes away. Trying to pick up the pieces and go along with ongoing society can be difficult, and one may chose to live a life of seclusion. In Stephen Corron’s short film “Puzzled,” an elderly woman relies on puzzles to comfort her but comes to realize that her comforting puzzles can turn their backs on her.
“Puzzled” begins with a beautiful piano melody accompanied with pieces of puzzles being showered in throughout the title credits. This sets up the short film, as we are next shown Emily (Madge Levinson) wearing a flowery dress and sweater putting together a puzzle. Emily has a very sad look on her face, and drudgingly looks over to the empty chair where her partner used to sit to create the puzzles with her. When Emily finishes the puzzle, she hears her doorbell and instantly gets up to see who it is. She finds a box on her front doorstep, and is anxious to find out what it is. When seeing it is another puzzle, she quickly goes to work putting together this mysterious present someone left for her.
When Emily starts to figure out what is depicted in the puzzle, a sense of panic rushes over her as she gasps seeing that herself is pictured in the final product. The final pieces show a faint woman standing in her window, and as Emily sees this woman in the puzzle she is immediately attacked by a young nurse (Athena Prychodko) in a very form fitting nurse outfit that repeatedly stabs her in the neck with a deadly, massive syringe. The nurse continues stabbing Emily in the neck, as blood splatters everywhere, squirting many different directions. When the nurse is finished, she grabs the puzzle and throws it on Emily. The end of the film depicts a view into the nurse’s evil eyes to its dramatic finish.
“Puzzled” is a short film in black and white, which is beautifully accompanied by music that is beautiful and dramatic in all the right spots. Even though we are unaware of any back story of Emily and the psychotic nurse, there are plenty of clues to help the viewer piece together Emily’s sadness via her looking at her chair sadly and her wedding ring still intact. The nurse is a psychological twist on the trusting woman who cares for you, as she kills Emily with a massive syringe. Both actresses did an excellent job depicting their characters, and the viewer’s heart is broken when the old and lonely woman is killed off fairly destructively. The blood and gore aspects are very believable, as when stabbed blood runs freely from the old woman’s neck.
Stephen Corron’s short film “Puzzled” is a tale of an unprecedented murder, as a lonely old woman is killed by a psychotic nurse. I enjoyed the short film, and was surprised to see Emily killed off at the conclusion, interfering with her normal humdrum life. “Puzzled” is definitely a film to view for horror fans that enjoy shocking twists, and those who enjoy a shocking ending that stars a very scantily clad and deadly nurse.