There is something all together unsettling about Manimal Film’s A Death Story Called Girl, and I’m not sure exactly what it is.

Perhaps it’s the brightly lit, picturesque settings. Maybe it’s the fact that the protagonist (antagonist?) is so lovely and seemingly innocent as she moves about. Perhaps it is the clues about her and the world in which she resides hidden in the final frames of this 12 minute short.

Whatever the reason, the film, the directorial debut of Bas-Tzion Beahan, is a remarkable watch, and speaks to the promise of this up and coming writer/director.

The film’s star, Livvy Bennett, is equally talented. Her bright, expressive face somehow manages to convey a whole host of emotional responses to the world around her while keeping her eyes almost completely neutral.

One of the standout elements of the film, however, is Beahan’s choice of music. We waft along on the strains of Bobby Vinton’s “Sealed with a Kiss” as Bambi prepares for her day, and we drift along to the strains of “The Impossible Dream” as she carries out her plans.

The juxtaposition of the sound and imagery creates a finely tuned tension that draws the audience into its clutches.

A Death Story Called Girl will be presented in the Thriller Shorts B block on Saturday, October 20, 2018 at 8 pm in House 1 of the Gateway Film Center in Columbus, Ohio. For ticketing information and for a full schedule of events click here.