A short about how the bravest thing any of us ever does is reveal ourselves to another person–and how that’s also our only hope to ever be known and loved.
From a fun but brave pillow-talk, things escalate quickly into traumatic reveals. Phinehas Hodges’ film ‘Secrets’ tests the human psychological levels of trust in relationships – at a much deeper entity of which is perhaps initially thought. As the reveals grow we see the emotions grow to tell the unwritten story – which is a difficult but fabulous performance y the cast.
I originally wrote this film as a short story almost four years ago, and it sat unread, like most short stories (sadly) do, on a hard drive. On a whim, I decided to turn it into a short film (my first script) and wrote and rewrote about forty drafts of it. Through all of those drafts, the ending was a sad one. Kate leaves the coffee shop, after breaking up with Ben.
But last summer, right before shooting it, I had a change of heart. I was tired of seeing art that acts is if, just because
there is pain in this world, that’s all that can be shown. As if the existence of pain precludes the existence of joy, love, pleasure. I began to feel in fact that love is the only answer to pain, and that real love requires you to show yourself, darkness, insecurites, loss–to someone else. To reveal these truths about ourselves is the bravest thing anyone does.
So I rewrote the ending.
Short films do tempt to steer away from happy endings as directors often fear the reluctance of Hollywood happy endings, and want to disassociate themselves of the higher corporate decision big budget films often have to deal with. But a sad ending is not always the answer, and while speaking of bravery, director Phinehas Hodges found the courage to re-write his ending at the last minute for something that feels right.
I wanted to give my characters hope. As someone who suffered early childhood trauma (my mother passed away when I was five) I’ve seen so much of my life shaped by that pain, that memory; and so, in a way, by rewriting the ending, I was also giving myself hope, hope for my future, hope for my shot at love and happiness in this life.
And hopefully the audience gets a little of that, too.