Skip to main content

TIFF 2017 - LATCHED a film by Justin Harding and Rob Brunner, opens the SHORTS PROGRAM



Newly-single mom Alana (Alana Elmer) and her 14-month-old son Bowen (Bowen Harding) are alone in the off-season on an island cottage, with only a strange old neighbour (Peter Higginson) for company. A choreographer looking to get back into the dance world, Alana uses her time of solitude to practice her moves and prepare for a new adventure involving an experimental dance company. Then on a walk in the woods with Bowen, they discover the decomposing remains of what is dubiously identified as a bat. It is not a bat.

 That’s the bare and chilling premise of Latched, directors Justin Harding and Rob Brunner’s latest horror short, which is debuting at the Toronto International Film Festival, opening the Shorts Program. No stranger to the concept of terror-and-children, Harding and Brunner recently turned heads with Kookie, a short, terrifying film about a greedy little girl, a haunted cookie jar and a killer clown, which earned an Official Selection at SXSW and won of over 30 awards.


What distinguishes Latched, however, is that it is a meta-project involving Harding’s real-life wife and child, a maternal dynamic the filmmaker knew would translate to the screen powerfully. Elmer (who also starred in Kookie) actually is an acclaimed dancer with the Toronto Dance Theatre and emerging from maternity leave with her son Bowen. The rotting “fairy creature” that terrorizes her is fellow professional dancer Jarrett Siddall.

 And, in a full-circle move that’s further representative of the film’s intimate creative approach, Harding convinced a major mentor of his youth – his film class and visual storytelling teacher Dale Andrews – to join as executive producer, bringing with him the passion that first inspired him 16 years earlier. “It’s a new type of genre film,” says Harding, “inspired by a desire to produce something uniquely beautiful and shocking involving immediate family and cherished friends.”


“Latched was designed to dance between the frightening and the artistic,” Brunner adds. “This story could only be told with the honest dynamic of a mother and son whose real relationship lures the viewer deeper into an unexpected nightmare.” Harding and Brunner are reality-TV veterans with an urge to go surreal. Brunner has directed The Amazing Race Canada, Wild Things with Dominic Monaghan and Top Chef Canada, while Harding has produced The Amazing Race Canada, Master Chef Canada and more. “Everything we’ve done has been with a mind to getting back to our roots,” Brunner says. “We approach everything we do, including the big reality shows, with a film-making approach. It’s truly where our heart is. Justin and I have worked together for many years and share a creative eye.”


Harding and Brunner have gone on to create The Bokeh Collective, with a goal “to push the boundaries of epic storytelling.” The company is working show-running four different American documentary series. Having shepherded their work through the most prestigious showcases and festivals in film, they are ready to expand their creative journey to include feature-length production. Indeed, Latched is a short film with a feature-length sensibility. Its score was created in collaboration with composer Vivien Villani, who conducted original music with a 19-piece orchestra. “To call it a passion project would be an understatement,” Harding says.  “We are beyond excited to share our crazy little film with everyone at TIFF.”



SCREENS:  
Audience
Date
Time
Venue
Public 1
Sun, Sept 10
9:30PM
Scotiabank, Cinema 13
Public 2
Sat, Sept 16
6:45PM
Scotiabank, Cinema 8

Popular posts from this blog

Richard Armitage interview on SLEEPWALKER

SLEEPWALKER is the latest film from director Elliott Lester. Troubled by bouts of sleepwalking and disturbing nightmares, graduate student Sarah Foster goes to her university's sleep research center for help. When she wakes up after her first night of being monitored, the world she lives in seems to have changed in subtle, Twilight-Zone-esque ways. In fact, every time she goes to sleep now, she wakes up in a slightly different version of her world. With the help of sleep researcher Dr. Scott White, she tries to work her way back to the reality she started in. But when they finally succeed, it’s revealed that Sarah’s world is not what she thought at all.

Today my guest is one of the stars SLEEPWALKER, Richard Armitage. Tonight we talk about his work on that film as well as his work as Thorin Oakenshiled in The Hobbit Films, as John Proctor in The Crucible, and his upcoming films Ocens 8 and the Julie Delpy directed film My Zoe.

Sleepwalker is Now Available on Digital HD and On Dem…

Internet Trolls and Critics in the Age of Rotten Tomatoes - A Look at the Critical Response to GOTTI

Hate, intolerance, and cruelty are the most valued currencies in the digital age. Online publications deal in the same eye-catching tabloid headlines that were once exclusive to rags like WEEKLY WORLD NEWS and the NATIONAL ENQUIRER. The monetization of clicks is ruining many forms of journalism and film criticism is just one of them. When organizations can see what headlines are generating revenue its only natural that sensationalism would start to rise. There is no consorted hivemind like conspiracy to destroy certain films but rather internet activity that has boosted a certain type of writer. From the outside, online film critics share quite a bit with their Twitter troll counterparts.

The critical response to John Travolta's passion project Gotti has been less than favorable, in fact, it has been downright abysmal. A project over ten years in the making, Travolta has poured his heart and soul into this venture. And many writers seem to take pleasure in the film's failure.

I…

99 FROM 99: Cruel Intentions

On our latest episode of99 FROM 99, one host discovers some disturbing secrets about his co-host. All will be revealed in this episode on guilty pleasure CRUEL INTENTIONS! Namely that one host disagrees with the verdict of feeling guilt for enjoying this look at the cutthroat world of the powerful and wealthy transported to the realm of high school drama. Meanwhile the other host just feels bad for Selma Blair and all parties involved, including our dear listeners. Did we mention to give us a follow and a listen at the links below? Support what we do with bonus content and early episodes onPatreon Listen iTunes/Podbean Facebook/Instagram/Twitter: @99from99