Usually when we receive a film in our festival, we firstly check the synopsis and then watch the movie. When we read the synopsis for ‘Uncle Silas’ we were a little bit disappointed: “During her brother's visit to meet her newborn, Maureen witnesses firsthand the tailspin of self destruction he is on. This may be her last chance to save him.” In many cases, the movie is over credited and over sold in the synopsis; we’ve encountered hundreds of cases where basic, boring love stories were presented as trips of internal rediscovery of the self of the characters or other lame things. But in this case, the overview we received with the movie is not enough.
There is no doubt that this short is really amazing. It is way more than what is written in the synopsis and clearly more than a regular viewer could perceive. For us, the whole family drama, where a brother comes to meet his sister’s newborn nephew was more profound and filled with bitter tears than most of the so called dramas that are very pretentious and end up being some jokes nobody laughs at. The particular scene where the man takes a hit of heroin in his sister’s bathroom is a very powerful metaphor. The intrusion of the outcast in the sacred space of maternity can have dangerous results on the newborn, and the mother senses the danger and stands her ground.
We can see how she deals with the problem in the most mature way possible. The redemption of the outcast in the end of the movie is another side of the god-power any mother has, the power to let things go, but at the same time, have everything in control.
Sayra Player and Rebecca Brillhart's movie has amazing cinematography, a superb soundtrack and a perfect cast. The plot could easily be extended into a feature film, and that is because there are enough things that could be juggled in so many ways that this project won’t lose even one percent of its charm.
Review written by Vlad A.G