THEODORE’S GIFT (15:24) is a short film about Iris (Ella Watkins), a naive young woman who sets out to escape her austere upbringing, only to discover that she is ill prepared for what the journey will bring.
Written and Directed by Elli Iliades, the film opens with haunting score (Benjamin Griffiths) and visually stunning cinematography (Michi Marosszeky). Ella Watkins and Tony Nikolakopoulos are mesmerizing as the father and daughter.
The film explores a young girl who wants more to life than living in the country. The father is torn – but willing to let go – with a gift of a locket that once belonged to Iris’ mother. The journey to the train station takes on an unexpected turn, when Iris takes a ride from someone she knows. The silence during the car ride, will bring you into Iris’ terror.
The use of lighting and shadows gives way to beautiful cinematography. Simplicity of the set design is perfect. Exterior shots are not only breathtaking but haunting. It’s an emotional journey – but also a visual one.
Supporting cast are wonderful, especially Ryan O’Kane as Dean.
This film reminds us that youth brings no fear – and the hard lessons this teaches us.
THEODORE’S GIFT can be seen on: