My first thought watching this short film: is this going to be a Puritan experience? Then suddenly I was drawn in. A woman was grabbed by a dirty male companion, indicating she has actually been kidnapped. “What’s going to happen to her?” I thought frantically. She is shown tied up with another girl. The men with them seem under pressure to deliver their quarry, but there seems to be an extra evil, gross man in the group. He ends up being an obnoxious character that I loved to hate. Poor girls! I rallied behind the woman as she tried defending the younger girl being harassed by that man. The leader of the pack comes to the rescue, but why? The scene took a turn for the worse. “We don’t sell damaged goods!”
I am worried for the girls from beginning to end. Maybe I have a personal investment because I am a woman and I have experienced sexual harassment in my personal life and know many other women who have. My thoughts turn to current events. So many white men in government positions and men in film are being accused of harassing women. I wanted to jump in the movie and save the girls from their predicament.
There is also a hero not willing to give up. Don’t we all want that? No matter our situation? If we’re lost, alone, scared, threatened, we tend to hope for someone to come and save us, especially if we’re not in a position to save ourselves. I start asking the typical questions: Are the two damsels in distress going to be ok? Will the two heroes be able to save them in time? Will the women save themselves?
I wondered if this was going to play too much into stereotypes—where guy saves girl—but the heroine is what you would hope she would be.
I don’t appreciate that women have always been the object of sexual gratification in society and unfortunately in film. It’s frustrating to see it still as the subject of current films, but I love that we are growing as a collective group so show that yes, there still is this awful stereotype of the damsel in distress (and, yes, there is a man going to lengths to save her), but at least now we can safely expect that the damsel can defend herself. It’s taken a few years, but I believe that we should celebrate each step of progress. And who doesn’t enjoy the idea of good vs evil with good winning?
I wish the female characters were a little more developed, especially the younger girl’s, simply because the film was so male-centric. I realize that the subject of kidnapping women for sexual reasons naturally will tend to be male-centric, unfortunately, but since I feel more connected to the women, I wanted a little more from their characters. For example, the last bit of dialogue comes from a dying man and shows his character’s development, not about the women or their story, making it seem like that was more important than the development of the female characters.
Overall, I enjoyed the film. I liked the subject matter, loved the cinematography, acting and wardrobes. Some of the scene transitions were abrupt, but it works with the film because the scenes themselves are abrupt giving you an all-around sense of curiosity mixed with suspense. Some of the cheating camera angles were a little off, but it doesn’t take away from the experience of the story.