FOOTPRINTS, 13min, Canada, Horror/Family
Directed by Kevin Saycharuen
Deep in the forest, Cahng, an injured hunter searches for his family who are being haunted by a supernatural force.
Movie Review by Kierston Drier
Footprints, a Canadian film by Kevin Saycharuen, will surprise an audience at first with its’ exceptional attention to cinematic details and a level of luminous colour and brightness that is not characteristic of a traditional Horror. Cahng, an injured hunter lost in the forest, seems compelled to track down the monstrous beast that has ruthlessly murdered his wife and child. He is tortured by their absence, plagued by visions and nightmares of them, and appears to be constantly falling in and out of delusions including them.
One tradition that is held onto with stunning effectiveness is that the audience never sees the monster. It can be heard, and often palpably felt- but we are only once ever shown anything remotely supernatural, in the form of a sort of demon ghost who briefly appears in lieu of Cahng’s missing son.
There are cinematic moments in this piece that are no less than stunning. There are breath-taking moments of utter natural beauty that capture of the setting of the forest that truly make us feel that monster in this film lurks somewhere within the disconnect humans have put between themselves and nature. However the demon that is responsible for Cahng’s tragedy is not within the forest- it is within himself.
Footprints is not a clear film. It is debatable if the plot is linear. The pay-off, while impressive, does not answer all the questions the audience is bound to have by the end of the film. Yet, Saycharuen’s work has a poignancy to it that stirs deep, primal emotions in those who watch. It is a true piece of cinema, a true piece of art, in the sense that is leave us with more questions than answers.
Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video of the short film: