Recently, I was privileged to enjoy a sneak preview of the latest short film, Azreal's Dissent, by up-and-coming director Joyia D. Bradley. I read the script about a year ago, and posted about it then, really excited about the idea of the piece coming to life. Well, now it has, surpassing my expectations, which, albeit, were high. Bradley has managed to bring her script to fruition with all its dark edginess intact, cool special effects to boot.
Here's a summary of the story: Azreal, the Death Angel, is tired of shouldering the world's grief and leaves her position, throwing the whole world off balance. With no deaths taking place for a year, both Michael and Lucifer join forces to fight to save the universe, only to discover an enemy of them both, Lilith, is rising to her destiny.
Each character in the film has a full and interesting personality that the director makes apparent within the seventeen minutes or so of the film's duration. Lucifer is played by Cherrye J. Davis as a sassy, almost business like woman, while her nemesis. Lilith (Alisa Glembotski), comes across as nurturing at first, menacing later, creating an interesting dilemma for the viewer: who do we trust?
Azreal, played by Katie Mack, shows true vulnerability. We sense her connection to this world, her desire to be merely a mortal, to have and keep love. It is, however, when she and her boyfriend decide to celebrate "Miracle Day," the one year anniversary of no deaths in the world, with a recreational drug, that her real identity becomes apparent.
There are some very appealing side characters as well: Lucifer's hound: the three Evils, and the archangel Michael in particular. Costuming adds to each character's appeal, giving a futuristic sway to the movie, while maintaining style and interest.
Some of the sets were amazing, such as a console that Michael uses to view all the beings of the world. It's clear that, in other scenes, Bradley used her creativity to turn normal locations into some really interesting spaces, something that other directors would be hard pressed to do on a limited budget.
The sound effects were good, the music compelling, and over all, it's clear that a really solid group of professionals were responsible for making Azreal's Dissent into something very special. I think we can expect some positive attention for it at the film festivals, and I, for one, will be paying attention to see where this cool little film ends up.
Check out the trailer here:
And follow Azreal's Dissent on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/AzrealDissent/?fref=ts