Review by Mark Schwab
February 2nd, 2019
In the dark of night, Mina (Chelsea Jordon) is violently kidnapped and thrown into a cage by people dressed in black-ops style outfits. She can see into the cage next to her where another young woman Rhonda (Cortney Palm) talks in dazed sentences of the severely traumatized. Mina is desperate to find out why she's there and what is going to be done to her. She finds out soon enough.
Written and directed by Eugene du Plessis, the short film HERRINGBONE tells a grim tale of visual metaphor designed to provoke and surprise. Since the film is short (10 minutes), this leaves very little room to talk about the film without spoilers but I can say that HERRINGBONE is strongly directed and acted and the message comes through loud and clear. The atmosphere carries a brutal vividness that will easily draw you into the situation. Fortunately, director du Plessis does a fine job of implying these gruesome details instead of graphically exploiting them. It allows the audience to take it in instead of averting their eyes which shows skillful filmmaking. There is also an excellent score by Sergei Stern that powerfully adds to the disturbing imagery.
When HERRINGBONE's message is revealed, you can't help but appreciate the original concept used here to tackle a hot-button issue that affects all of us. Whichever side of the ideological fence you might be on, I'm not sure it'll make you jump to the other side but this short film is still undeniably provocative and worth a look if it appears in a festival near you.
To learn more about HERRINGBONE, click on the links below: