LET ME PLAY is a short horror film written and directed by Andrew Bell as part of an MFA degree in film at Columbia University School of the Arts. The film stars Juliet Luchsinger, Lucas Luchsinger, Douglas Wann, and Gergana Mellin.
Grace and her mischievous brother Mark are staying with their grandmother while their mother is away. Grace has built a blanket fort and is playing alone when Mark sneaks up on her and scares her. When they begin fighting as siblings do, their grandmother calls them to come down for dinner. As she is leaving her room, Grace thinks she hears something in the closet.
Using cinematography and simple, but effective special effects, LET ME PLAY does an excellent job of setting up an unsettling atmosphere for the viewer. A ghostly little boy is indeed hiding in the closet and he wants Grace to play a game with him.
When Grace tells her brother she thinks she saw something in her room, he teases her relentlessly. Grace’s grandmother is very religious and has had enough of Grace’s impetuous behavior and tells her she must apologize to God for misbehaving. Grace scoffs at her grandmother’s demands, and when she returns to her room, the little boy in the closet appears and tells her he wants to play a game.
When Grace tries to tell her brother about the boy in her room, he laughs at her and tells her a story. He tells her that their mother had a brother who disappeared. Grace yells that she doesn’t believe him and runs back up to her room where the boy is waiting for her. She unwillingly participates in the boy’s game with a tragic result. Grace is prone to acting out, so although we see what happens next, it is left up to the viewer to decide what is real and what is not.
Using makeup, lighting, and exceptional editing, the filmmakers successfully create a creepy environment to tell their ghost story. Juliet Luchsinger is great as Grace and believably conveys the emotions of a child who just wants to play and doesn’t know what to believe when faced with the ghost of a little boy who may have sinister intentions. In its nine-minute runtime, LET ME PLAY impressively tells a terrifying ghost story you won’t soon forget.
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