By Stu Greenfield (@Youvegotfilmon)
No, this is not an animated film in the same vein as Hop! Quite the opposite in fact. Rabbit is a twisty new short by director Ndubuisi Aja. The film focuses on a female protagonist who we can infer is one half of an unhappy and abusive relationship. At the start of the film we join her sitting in her car. She has had enough and is talking to a confident about what she has decided to do to deal with the situation. Hire a hitman, or so is the implication. The tension builds as we watch the women’s other half come home to a stranger with a knife. Slowly the get closer to each other without seeing the other. At the climax point the scenario changes. Or does it?
Rabbit is a thought-provoking piece that looks at the extremes a person may go to to escape a situation that is abusive but then turns it all on its head and has you questioning your own morality as you consider your assumptions. The twist is a little much, in that it is almost too twisty with no logical reasoning leaving the audience with a multitude of questions but it will leave people pondering.
The production of Rabbit is impressive. From the clear voice over of the telephone call at the start of the film to effective camera work, excellent editing and great environmental setting, the film has a professional feel to it. This aids the narrative well but it is eroded by a stereotypical script, especially in the final scene where we hear a speech full of clichés that you would expect to hear in that situation but not what would actually be said in reality. The gruff hitman is also a little stereotypical with a shaved head and tattooed arms. Whilst the character is easily recognisable it is not needed, a female hit-women would have been more refreshing.
These points aside, Rabbit is an interesting piece that will make viewers think rather than giving away all the answers. It promotes the use of imagination. It offers an insight into what it may be like for many in a traumatic situation and looks at the extremes that people may explore when they feel trapped, even if it is just inside their head. Although certain aspects of the film could be improved on it still does pack an unseen and implied punch. Don’t forget to look for the white rabbit.
Watch the full film on Vimeo.