A little girl investigates the presence of a monster that her parents unknowingly created.
We all grew up with a monster inside a house at some point or another in our lives, but in Christiano Dias’ ‘Monster in A House’, the monster is a creature unknowingly created by the parents themselves in a tightly bounded mysterious and terrifying short film, and oh, the entire 10 minutes was done in one continuous shot.
Monster in a House (MIAH) is part of a short film “childhood trilogy” that deals with children’s imaginations through very real familial issues like divorce. It is second in this anthology/trilogy of shorts that I’ve done with the endlessly talented Lisa Roumain (Avatar) and Joseph Bottoms (The Black Hole, Holocaust) and brilliant composer Daniel James Chan, with the final one coming sometime next year. I should mention that the little girl in the film, Kitana Turnbull is a born natural that is going to be huge someday. Very glad to have worked and hope to continue working with all of them.
This entire production is one big monster, with the amount of planning and choreography imaginable – the outcome is quite impressive when you start thinking about all the lighting effects continuously happening throughout the nightmarish film. But things get much deeper than just a spooky monster haunting a child, Dias believes the film is more so a film about not running away from problems that, if you let them, can consume you.
It’s strongly metaphorical and a style that I prefer to liken to magical realism. Very happy to have worked with the phenomenal Michael Helenek (Director of Photography) again. He and the camera/lighting team really pulled off what seemed impossible when we first started discussing it, and that is to do it in a single shot. We came close and the final product definitely feels that way. It’s all to serve the theme, and “cutting” felt like giving up; like you were letting your problems win. We wanted to represent what would happen when you finally stand up to something that can sometimes seem “monstrous.” We’re now at the tail end of our year long festival run, which so far has netted over 15 selections, 8 nominations, and 5 wins; excited for what the future holds.
Enjoy this wonderful cinematic peace, and Happy Halloween!