Tortured (2013) – By Josh Samford

Tortured is a four minute short detailing a captive man being, as the title implies, tortured by another. While this may at first sound like the movie would have more in common with an Eli Roth production than an arthouse film, you might be wrong on that. Shot over the course of 24 hours for a festival project, this short film by Oisin Mac Coille has a fair amount of depth despite its simplicity. Still, to go into the film heavily is to spoil it, but the short is based around a very simple premise and a quote from Carl Jung that says, "The healthy man does not torture others – generally it is the tortured who turn into torturers." The short film features a twist ending, if you can believe it, that is less about inspiring a queasy stomach, and more about exploring the psychology of a character who we are introduced to for only a few minutes. The short could be interpreted in many ways, but I like to imagine that it is about a man dealing with multiple sides of his own personality and having to choose a direction within his life. Although it would be nice to be less ambivalent, delving too deep into the short would potentially ruin the experience for others. Tortured is an incredibly short feature, but it comes recommended. It’s an interesting idea that is shot in a very dark and morbid way, giving it plenty of life onscreen. If you run across this short, definitely give it a look.