BEWARE, the latest short from Charles Chudabalais (4OuR, Serena Waits) is a variation on the old story about a terrifyingly threatening note slid under the door. The note is terrifying because it was a closet door it was slid under.
This time around Chudabalais directs from a script by Richard J. Aguirre (Lilith, Paranormal Attraction) as well as plays the man on the receiving end of the note. Rather than react in panic, he decides to respond with a note of his own. Whether that was a better idea than simply fleeing in fear provides the film with its story.
Apart from a brief appearance by Erika Boxler BEWARE is a one-man show with Chudabalais reading and responding to the notes while trying to find out who is in his closets. With nobody to talk to he has to do it all with facial expressions and body language which he pulls off well.
The story itself is efficiently told over the film’s five-minute run time and it’s amusing even there isn’t much doubt about how it will end. But that’s a running issue with shorts that run this short, there’s not much you can do but set up a final jump. What makes the difference is how you do it.
As much as I enjoyed BEWARE I wish Chudabala would try his hand at a longer format piece. You can only keep mining the same territory for so long before viewer fatigue sets in. Not to mention longer pieces have a better chance of getting picked up for anthology films and getting him more exposure.
I’ve embedded BEWARE here for your viewing pleasure. It’s also available free on the director’s YouTube channel along with his other short films. You can also check out his production company’s Facebook page for more details on his films.