Firstly, I’d just like to start off by thanking first time Writer/Director, William Boodell for allowing me early access to an online screener of his 8 minute Horror/Drama short, “Born Of Sin”. Born Of Sin opens in a car park at the end of an afternoon out between, Father (played by James Henderson) and his young Daughter, Julie (Bella Anderson). Wanting just one more harmless drink, the man leaves his daughter to wait in the car. Little does he know the fate that’s in store for her on this particular evening. The film also stars Paula Lindberg and Patrick Jankiewicz. Boodell’s film background lies primarily in editing, having worked on popular TV comedy show, “My Name Is Earl”, as well as SyFy films “Battledogs” and “Sharknado” *see review* https://adamthemoviegod.com/sharknado-review/ and even more recently, Crime/Drama “Narcos”. Born Of Sin was shot in Los Angeles for an estimated $1,000.
At its core, William’s script is a cautionary tale for all the parents out there, albeit a slightly farfetched one regarding the specifics (or maybe not so farfetched these days). Any who, rule numero uno, your children come first. The framing in Born Of Sin is solid and the audio track volume is nice and consistent. The use of ambient synth sounds in the score work quite well given the tone of the film. I’m not sure if it was intentional or not (or if it was even makeup) but young first timer, Bella Anderson looked really worn out and dark around the eyes during the shoot, perhaps even further highlighting the effect that her fathers addiction might have had on her. I was neither here nor there on Born Of Sin until the closing moments but in the end it won me over.
My complaint with low-budget short films is often the handheld approach to the camera work, as is the case with Born Of Sin (it’s just a personal preference issue). It seems that no matter how smooth you attempt to move or transition, it’s easy to experience focus issues and shuttering when you don’t have the equipment grounded or stabilized. Early shots in the car do bounce up and down a little and it’s a touch distracting. There’s one crucial scene missing from Born Of Sin, one which should have seen either the Father or Julie locking the car doors (especially because they even relayed that information) and unfortunately that does hurt the films credibility because it makes the events that follow far too easy to put into motion.
Boodell creatively uses his debut short, Born Of Sin to tap into every parents fundamental fear of something tragic happening to their child, and then he puts his own little exclamation point on it just for good measure. I think the relevant premise and its directional twist will be lauded by plenty of horror lovers and critics. I would’ve preferred to have seen a different method of presentation and the lead in to the key plot device written a bit smarter. All that said, this is a very impressive first film from Boodell and I look forward to checking out more of his work in the future.
My rating for “Born Of Sin” is 7.5/10