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Film Review: Life Love Regret (short film) (2013)

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SYNOPSIS:

A woman helps people to solve, in a definitive way, problems and suffering of a lifetime. A true professional until a new “job” manages to affect her on a personal level.

REVIEW:

Life. Love. Regret. is a short Italian film directed and co-written by Federico Scargiali. A winner of the 2014 FI PI LI Horror Film Festival award for “Best Short Film,” the story is about a woman (played by Eileen Daly, a veteran actress who has also shown up in a handful of Andreas Schnaas and Timo Rose films) who helps people in their time of need. Well, kind of. She plays the role of Angel of Death, assisting people who are depressed or dying to end their own lives.

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We first see an older man, obviously in pain, coughing up blood as he’s shaving. The woman arrives at his house, lets him finish his meal, then helps him slit his own throat. Next, we see her pull the trigger of the gun in another man’s mouth, blowing his head off and covering the wall in blood and brains. At church, she holds a plastic bag over (what we assume is) a preacher’s face, then watch as he struggles through the last of his oxygen, masturbating himself as he dies. With each victim, the woman takes a Polaroid photo of her work, and while she relaxes at home, we see a large collection of such photos on her wall. The job doesn’t seem to affect her much, until she receives a request from a young girl.

At only about nine minutes long, Life. Love. Regret. is hardly a chore to sit through. It is well shot, with very little dialogue, letting the visuals do the talking. Those nine minutes are chock full of depressing images, assorted characters who have given up the fight, for whatever reason – the old man who is sick; the young man with a beaten face, probably as a result of being bullied; the preacher who probably feels a lot of guilt for unseen crimes; and a young girl, covered in scars from a life of cutting. The deaths are fairly brutal, too. There’s quite a bit of blood squeezed into the short running time.

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Life. Love. Regret. shows quite a bit of promise from director Scargiali. I’d be interested in seeing what he might bring to a full length film. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but the end of the film is a little heartbreaking, when the anti-hero meets with her final client. But whatever you do, don’t turn it off until the very end, after the credits, or you’ll miss something very important, a “stinger,” if you will. Then again, if you can’t be patient enough to wait out nine minutes, you probably don’t deserve the resolution the last scene will bring you. For all others, I recommend looking this movie up and giving it a watch.

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