More short films, kiddies! Today we have DOWN, written and directed by Garry Crystal.
I want to make a few trigger warnings here at the beginning before I get started. This is not a horror film. This is a very personal project, crowd-funded in memory of an actor named Timothy Welling who took his own life in 2012.
The story is about a woman named Alice (played by Golden Globe award winner Amanda Donohoe, who you may recognize from the 1988 film LAIR OF THE WHITE WORM). Alice appears to be a bit germaphobic, carrying disposable gloves and the like in her handbag. As she calls an elevator in the carpark, the doors open to a scene of sheer horror.
In the elevator is a young man named Ed (played by James Eeles). The elevator is covered in blood – all over the walls and floor, and of course all over Ed himself. He has a self-inflicted injury on his arm, and he’s in very bad shape. All he can do is keep saying “I’m sorry” to Alice as she enters the elevator.
Alice helps him a bit, and starts the elevator. Unfortunately, it gets stuck and they are now trapped together on the elevator as they wait for help to arrive. They begin to talk, and as the conversation unfolds we learn about why Ed has done this thing, and that Alice knows all too well about that choice.
This is a beautiful character study. Two very talented actors on one set, talking and learning about each other. I was very much pulled in to this story. We get to know Alice and Ed pretty well by the end, and I found myself invested in them. I honestly think this is one of the best short films I’ve seen in a very long time.
It could be difficult for some people to watch. But if you can, I highly recommend giving it a viewing.