Director Adam Ciolfi (The Lady of Names, Broken) brings a moving stop-motion experience to viewers with his latest short film, Hive. The short follows three survivors of an alien race as their world crumbles around them. Trapped in a church, they discuss what has become of their world, how it has affected their faith, and what little hope they may have left.
Ciolfi also handles writing duties for Hive, which feels particularly prescient after the recent elections south of the border. While I’m sure this is all coincidence, there’s no escaping the fact that his short certainly echoes the way many people seem to feel at the moment. His characters talk about the way that they ignored the signs of what would come, and moved forward believing that everything would be right, even though they knew it wouldn’t. If that doesn’t fit our current thinking, nothing does.
The story soon moves onto questions about God and faith, and while nothing is really surprising in what is said, it doesn’t make it any less powerful. More importantly, the short doesn’t choose sides. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to belief, and it shouldn’t change the way we look at one another.
The design of Hive is fantastic, and the stop-motion is quite smooth, something that doesn’t always happen when it comes to lower budget offerings like this. The characters look a bit like ants, which also brings to mind the place where they live. One could go off on wild tangents imagining that their world is simply existing inside our own, or that it’s on its own out in the universe. Trapped in one location, there’s nothing to suggest where everything is taking place, adding another level of mystery that we can bring our own conclusions to.
While it may not be earth shattering in what it says, Hive is still powerfully written and well voice acted. With an interesting design and solid techniques, it’s a short film that you shouldn’t miss, which is perfect because it happens to be screening at Carlton Cinema as part of Little Terrors Horror Shorts on Wednesday, December 14, 2016 at 9:00 pm. Check their website for more information.