I’m back today on #ShortMovieMonday with a slick little film written and directed by Alfred Giancarli called Don’t Despair (No Te Desesperes). It tells the story of two obsessive collectors of serial killer memorabilia – also known as “murderabilia”.
SPOILER ALERT: This review WILL talk openly about the plot of the film. If you want to experience the film as it was intended watch it before reading this review. Full film is embedded at the end of this post.
Don’t Despair Plot & Thoughts
Before I get going with my thoughts, here’s the summary from director Alfred Giancarli:
“Two collectors of serial killer memorabilia meet in order to exchange a treasured piece of merchandise, but one of them has taken their dedication to their macabre master to unspeakable depths, and reveals a sinister plan to connect the two to their mentor through a horrifying recreation of his final “masterpiece.” A story of love, loss and obsession, Don’t Despair is a haunting horror film and a deep look into the allure of evil.”
First off, this film looks GREAT. I’m often surprised just how good indie films look these days and I really shouldn’t be. It’s aparant that Giancarli set out to make a great looking film and he accomplished just that. We quickly meet Rachel (Erin Etheridge) and William (Kevin Reed) who are collectors. They talk about “the forum” which speaks to me personally as I spend quite a bit of time on message forums. They talk about their “community” and how it’s weird to meet someone from the forums – a very real thing in my experience. We learn that this forum they speak of is for collectors of serial killer memorabilia. YIKES. Rachel is referred to as “The Queen of the Forum” by William. He as a piece that she’s wanted for quite some time and they’ve met to complete the transaction. I’ll admit I thought the plot was going to go in a different direction as I thought for sure this William guy was fucked, but I was wrong.
Rachel is looking to connect with her serial killer idol, and the piece in question is a magazine that the killer had owned. After going over the magazine with creepy precision, she invites him to a location. She takes him to a home where she has a women captive. We learn that she is attempting to recreate his final kill which she refers to as “The Masterpiece”. Masterpiece is played by Bec Fordyce… and played very well. She’s not on screen much, but when she is she’s masterful (excuse the pun). The dialoge between Rachel & William which seems forced I don’t think is. I think this is Giancarli’s way of show just how socially awkward these people are… or perhaps I’m just reading into it more than I should. Either way, it came off good to me.
Don’t Despair has a runtime of just over 16 minutes and it’s well worth your time to watch. We get one death (off screen) toward the end which is a little awkward but it’s really not important. This is a film that gets into the mind of a copy cat which is different than your traditional films that get you into the mind of the killer. I would like to have seen some more fight from the victim, but aside from that I’m not sure I’d change much of this slow burn of a film. Recommend.
You can learn more about Don’t Despair at the following links:
- Internet Movie Database
- Darkstar Entertainment, LLC – www.darkstarent.com
- Writer / Director Alfred Giancarli on Twitter – @AlfredGiancarli
Check out the full film below and leave us a comment to let us know what you think!