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Bella & Monica Film 3 - "New Year"

Bella & Monica Film 3 - "New Year"

New Year [2023]

A Bella & Monica short film.
"Alone except for the cloying presence of a parental figure in a dilapidated house shortly after Christmas, a young woman mourning the loss of a loved one battles to escape an existential nightmare, whilst encountering a colourful soul who may yet inspire her to find a way out."

The third and final part of a short film trilogy I've made to raise funds and awareness for a full feature (Parts 1 and 2 can be found here and here, or the trilogy as a whole can be watched here), 'New Year' introduces the character of Monica, a young woman somewhat on the opposite end of the scale to Bella's idealistic and sunny persona, but tending the same hurt soul. Over the course of a near half hour, Monica's world is slowly painted as she descends into her own inner turmoil before reaching a crossroad and decision on where to journey next.

I'd originally written two shorter scripts to introduce Monica and her life, containing events that would lead up to the events of the feature film much like Parts 1 and 2 had done for Bella. However, Beth (Monica) is always busy doing her own thing and when a tiny window arrived within which she was able to shoot, I quickly re-outlined a story and we shot as much as we could in a very short amount of time, overriding any intention not to rush the character and instead just desperately getting what narrative arc we could. The result is its own sort of existential nightmare that shares DNA with the two short scripts originally written, but very much became its own thing and was a very, very different process to 'Journeying': there, I had all the time in the world to write, shoot and edit at my own leisure, whereas this became an exercise in taking what time we could in post to make the best of the material we had, and definitely showed me that if the script isn't up to scratch, and you bite off more than you can chew during the shoot, the edit process will become very difficult if not impossible. I'm very proud of this film, and definitely bit off more than I could chew, but it's an uneasy watch that was always the intention for the character of Monica, setting up a potential interaction between herself and Bella where they may ultimately help to balance each other out...
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