Firstly, I’d just like to say thank you to Charlie Cargile at PopHorror.com for sending over a screener for the 9 minute Horror/Thriller short “Hada”, Written and Directed by Spanish filmmaker, Tony Morales. A mysterious entity known as Hada, visits a boy named Daniel whose just lost his last baby tooth. On this fateful night, it’s the light that will become Daniel’s worst enemy. The film stars Fernando Boza, Silvia Casanova, Michael Herraiz and Eva Isanta. I haven’t heard much about Morales but was glad to have this one sent to me. This is just his second short film.
Hada’s premise is quite a familiar one, somewhat conventional in its methods but extremely entertaining all the same. It opens with an elderly woman reading her grandson a bedtime story, then lights out. The story time beginning is a nice touch and the masterfully executed mood lighting helps set the scene for this quickie. Cinematography by Fernando Ronchese, occupying gorgeous framing and some effective gentle zooming, helps to highlight the high production value. The score is a great mix of bass orientated stuff and subtle use of violin, accentuated further by those clattering sounds you’ve probably heard in franchise films like “The Conjuring” and “Insidious”. The short contains no dialogue past the 2 or 3 minute mark but our young child actor does a really good job of portraying the right emotions.
There’s only a couple of minor issues I found with Hada. Firstly, there tends to be a lack of cohesiveness in the way some of the imagery is put forth. You tend to get away with a bit more in the confines of a paranormal based film, but with that said, some of the stuff Daniel sees goes awry in terms of the continuity. The other thing is the notion of having this particular evil’s presence determined by the emergence of light. If you’re not familiar with “Lights Out” (check out the short here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fDzdDfviLI), you’ll see what I mean. Except this time around you want the lights off instead!
I’m glad I had Morales film sent over to me by a fellow reviewer. I went in blind and was surprised with the end result. Hada is a well executed and brief little chiller that horror fans (and fans of shorts) will definitely enjoy. The camera work is superb, the lighting atmospheric and the score what’d you expect to hear in a film of this nature. I think a few particular shots could have used restructuring and the specific setup regarding the light isn’t all that original, but considering this will only take 9 minutes of your time I can certainly say it’s worth it. Keep an eye out for this one I’m sure it’s not too far away!
My rating for “Hada” is 8/10