BEST DRAMA - 2017 Euro Shorts International Film Festival
BRONZE PALM AWARD - 2017 Mexico International Film Festival
BEST FOREIGN PICTURE - 2016 Velvet Rope Film Festival
Nominated for Best Narrative Short - Long Beach Indie International Film Festival
After the death of her mother, Claire Jameson makes a shocking discovery whilst clearing out the house. She's soon propelled on a journey to uncover the past, one which takes the audience from the 1970s to the present day. Directed by Esther Hegarty, 'To The Grave' is a compelling tale of dark family secrets and fractured relationships.
Esther Hegarty - Director
This compelling short tells the story of a woman searching for answers, searching for newly discovered family connections, searching for sanity after a gruesome discovery. In a little under 20 minutes Director Esther Hegarty gives us a riveting depiction of shock to pain, confusion to clarity and hope to heart-warming completeness, insightfully exploring the journey from the death of her mother to the unearthing of a whole new family line.
This short film explores family heartache with the key themes of relationships, internal battles and dark secrets. The director and writer have successfully conveyed the main character’s (Claire’s) uttermost horrors and warranted burdens of the discovery of a baby skeleton following the passing of her mother. The story is raw and has a believable edge.
To The Grave begins with a passage showing Claire visiting her desperately ill mother in hospital, close to death and unaware of her daughter’s presence. As she passes, the scene immediately moves to the sad clearing of her mother’s possessions showing a moody undercurrent of alcohol use and undisclosed secrets. These opening shots drive the viewer quickly to the tone of the story and invite them to wonder and consider as the mood deepens on the discovery of the skeleton, tidily placed in a casket like box.
The main characters, Claire and Jim played by Jane Stanton and Mark Frost, have a loving togetherness overcome sometimes by a simmering frustration fuelled by the painful journey they are about to undertake. Mark plays the role of supporter extremely well and his understanding and compassion are portrayed excellently as Claire descends into a mild form of personal demons and past addictions. Her portrayal of the grieving daughter and unwilling detective is fabulous and the screen is filled with power and emotion as she goes in search of the truth, a truth that twists and turns along the way, a truth leaving the viewer in a mixed form of thoughtfulness and misguided knowledge.
As the short continues we see the plot unravel with flashbacks to 38 years before to reveal the absolute truth of the past, a past that is written and produced on screen in an excellent and fulfilling manner.
A short that is filled with surprises, a short that is as compelling as it is shocking, a short that leaves us with the thoughts that although a story can be told in a dark and moody setting the light at the end is more than fulfilling and certainly worth the viewing time, some would say it makes us want considerably more.
J P Martin Mbks
Adriano De Mello
Jo Cameron Brown
Alison B Matthews
Performance Film & Media Insurance
Deerhurst Road, University Of West London
Arri Rental, Audiolink, Camera Moves, Cinelease, Sixt, Tee2, Vmi
Onsight, Twickenham Studios
Anne-Marie Dargan, Hackney Council, Merton Council, Merton Film Office, Kingston Upon Thames Council, Kingston Film Office, Hotel Du Vin, Wimbledon, Raynes Park Library, White Hart Hotel, Kingston, Troy Barbecue, Abm Management, Bonnie & Betty, Creative Artists Management, Curtis Brown, Identity Agency Group, Steve Nealon Associates, Lesley Walker
Andrew Berg, Michael Birch, Gurvir Dhillon , Irene East, Cameron Gray, Jenny Hawes, Bernard Krichefski, Skye Kidd, Alan Mallyon, Mark Poole, Emily Precious, Michael And Jan Smith, Van Peterson Designs
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