Thieves (2013) – Josh Samford

With short films, it seems that independent filmmakers who go for the big genre-movie vibe often seem to miss the mark. While this isn’t always the case, it is something that does happen. This usually comes from the lack of budget interfering in what the filmmakers initially wanted to say or present, but occasionally you might run into that one short that has so much going for it that it seems impossible to fail. Such is the case with Thieves. While the short movie doesn’t exactly light the world on fire in terms of originality, it does showcase a talented group of young filmmakers who know how to grab their audience right out of the gate and throw them headfirst into their own cinematic world.

Thieves is a short that focuses on three characters. The first is Thomas, a young man who finds himself stranded in a city that seems as if it has been evacuated of all human life. His last memories are of him driving down the street, seeing something that he can not rightly recall, and then veering into a tree. Now, Thomas finds himself scrounging through this vacated city searching for food, water, and shelter. It would seem that his dreams have come true when he runs across two other survivors, Raven and James Carter. Raven tells Thomas about the large bang that has apparently killed all human beings on the East Coast of The United States. As Raven continues to speak though, Thomas begins to build up doubts about her as well as James Carter.

Technically, Thieves is a relatively impressive feat. The cinematography is not only impressive, but the locations used in the movie are pretty mind blowing. Likely the short was filmed in a guerrilla fashion, so the fact that these filmmakers were able to capture the empty urban environments that they did is fairly impressive. Director D. Erik Parks manages to take a big idea, the end of the world essentially, but forces it into a small package that manages to never feel tiny. The audience does believe that this is the end of humanity, and although the story is wrapped in enigma, it is easy to follow and accept due to the professionalism of the final product.

Thieves seems as if it were made as a test run for a feature film, and if that turns out to be the case, I can not wait to see what a feature length movie might look like. However, as a short, it stands out as an interesting piece of work that has more layers than one might expect. Indeed, after watching, I wondered if it might be a biblical allegory. So, this is certainly highly recommended. If you get the chance to check Thieves out – do so!