Directed by: Shazedul Haque
Written by: Shazedul Haque
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Inspiring. That is the only word I can use to describe Shazedul Haque's short film Left Behind. Inspiring - all the way until the end of the third act. It's at this time I was knocked on my ass by a swift uppercut. I had suspected something like this might happen, just not the extent of it. Could this have been based on a true story? I needed to read the description to find out. From what I can see, it isn't. At least... the 'details' are not true. The problem... correction, problems highlighted in this short film are very real. Even though Eddy (Andre Fyffe) is a complete fiction, his story probably rings true with so many real people. This is probably what makes this title so engrossing.
Eddy has worked hard his entire life. Helped with family matters, since his family was a single parent home, tried to do what was right and trained his arse off. All to become a boxer. A champion boxer. Things are going as planned and even though avoiding the street life has been tough, Eddy has maintained the course and has been accepted into a renowned boxing school. Life is good. Maybe not perfect, but once he becomes a champion it will be.
On the eve of Eddy's departure, he comes to the defense of a friend who has gotten himself in trouble with a local gang. It's this selfless action that changes Eddy's life. And not for the better. Left Behind is a cautionary tale. A story that demands to be discussed afterwards. It also doesn't hurt that the film itself is entertaining, and looks great as well.
Whenever someone talks about micro budget, independent titles, a certain 'type' of movie comes to mind. Crappy images and hard to listen to sound. Shazedul's film has no such fate. It looks and sounds the way it was meant to. You may 'know' this is a micro title, but you won't see it. From script to screen this is an excellent way to spend just over 10 minutes. Even the acting seems way to good for an indie title. All around from everyone. As I wrote, Left Behind doesn't look or feel indie. It's simply all around good entertainment.
But all things can't be happy. That's not the nature of life - and the ending of this title left me feeling hollow. I actually mean this in a good way. I wasn't unhappy with the ending because it was poorly done; I was unhappy with the ending because it was an unhappy ending. The complete opposite of the previous 2 acts. As the climax sunk in, the only way to describe my feelings would be saying I was speechless. Not 'quite' what I was expecting at all.
Once that play button is pressed, Left Behind demands to be watched and taken seriously. It reels you in and doesn't let go. Definitely one of the better indie films I've watched so far this year. Thumbs way up.