A home-schooled boy, bored and a little stir-crazy from the quarantine, is beginning to think rules are made to be broken. His protective working mother has different ideas, however, and has prompted a set of rules for him while he is alone. But they both agree on one house rule: you never answer the door. The problem is…there’s no food in the house. And our young hero is hungry.
After last fall’s “SAFER APART,” thelefthandproductions team continues to bring live hybrid theatre directly into your home with their newest avant-garde thriller film, “THRESHOLD,” which premiered world-wide on YouTube last Saturday evening, March 6th at 5:30PM pacific time. The plot centers around a child at home alone, with sinister, possibly supernatural forces attempting to take control of him.
Written by Jeremy Palmer and Directed by Shawn "Lefty" Plunkett, the short film features Elliott Plunkett, Michele Selin, Courtney Shaffer, Lyndsay Palmer and Peter Miller. It is produced by Jeremy Palmer, Gloria Plunkett and Shawn "Lefty" Plunkett (who also directs). The cast and crew are part of the troupe from LA’s Kentwood Players, which has been producing live theatre since the year 1950.
Prepare to have your hair raised and to dash desperately through any darkened rooms you encounter. At under six minutes, this short preternatural film gets straight to the point in building suspense and terror, without ever going to a sanguinary side. During a forbidden pizza delivery (forbidden by his mother, that is), the boy checks his digital-peephole door camera on his phone and finds a girl outside…but no pizza.
From there, this short quickly ratchets up the tension and begins to play on a familiar narrative in the land of Hollywood, when a white-skinned maiden with a blank stare and a spacey conversation rings your doorbell and then glares at it, appearing at least ominous, if not sinister. And without warning this one melds into another and suddenly you have double the fun. “She won’t be home for hours,” one says, bringing to mind the Grady twins at the Overlook Hotel. Before you know it, a third hellish figure appears, and things suddenly get a little more malevolent.
Honestly, there’s little as terrifying as seeing three Hadean-like figures at your door, particularly when you’re home alone and the only sounds you hear are from your own galloping heartbeat. And a typical atmospheric, suburban house that seems innocuously innocent just adds icing to this frosted fear cake.
The style of this production, from the wide angle camera shots to the lack of any real sound effects is inspired. No music…only breathing. The outset normality and atmosphere of a regular day in the neighborhood is surprisingly chilling and makes this a well-oiled psychological machine. It’s never easy to build and maintain tension when the film takes place in one location, but it’s done with ease here. It’s what you’re not seeing that freezes your blood.
“THRESHOLD”—by thelefthandproductions. Catch it now at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jzn0MXBbqMs
Arts & Entertainment Reviewer
The Show Report