One night two amateurs try to mug a lonely young woman on a beach. When their attempt fails they involve her in a much bigger plan meant to replace their first failed attempt with a success. But things get such a twisted turn that the young woman is brought to an incredible opportunity to get revenge.
Rodrigo Lages’ film is beautifully shot. Its cinematic looks draw one immediately in the story. Characters are well shaped and it’s easy to distinguish where one ends and another begins. Motivations are powerful: it is either the need for money for one’s family, the evil nature itself of a man or the wish for vengeance that drives the actions of the personages in ‘702’.
Rodrigo Lages’s story fascinates with its coincidental happenings, making things fall into place in a very strange way. But don’t be fooled, things are not random: whatever our actions they are equally returned to us by the universe. This seems to be the biggest ‘lecture’ behind ‘702’. Greed, negligence and shallowness, despair and hate make a strange lethal mix that entails everyone in a game of death. Whatever the characters plant, they collect.
We have rarely been confronted by such a dry outcome in a short film. No one gets away with it and even those who survive must live on with their conscience.
The director doesn’t spare his characters: he pushes them forward and abandons them in front of destiny. Just like in real life they must make it on their own. It’s impossible not to notice and appreciate his attempt to detach from the story and offer them free will. It confers the film a certain kind of authenticity. Things are not being pushed in a certain direction but let alone to happen. Actors impersonate their characters well, bearing their fatality like true martyrs of the fiction they are part of.
For its sense of detachment on the creator’s side from the story and for the wonderful stylised cinematography, ‘702’ was awarded the 2nd Place for Best Short Film Of November 2016 at The Monthly Film Festival.