By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)
Feb 9, 9:00pm
Feb 11, 4:00pm
3130 Tillicum Rd.
The supernatural world of malevolent entities is never far in “The Hollow Child.” It’s in the woods and the neighbourhood — a concept director Jeremy Lutter and writer Ben Rollo effectively conveys in their debut feature film premiering at the 2017 Victoria Film Festival, which starts today.
One of the telling visuals is how Lutter wanted the woods to appear outside of every window of the abode. Living by the forest can sometimes create a certain air of unease, especially if it’s everywhere. You never know what can thunder out. This danger is effervescent in “The Witch” (2016) and it may have inspired these two when making this work. Instead, in conversation, Lutter mused about the possibility of Rollo having his own dealings with those spirits since he lived by the woods. Part of the experiences seen in this film might be considered autobiographical.
“When living in the West Coast of Canada, it made sense to make the woods scary and have the story focus on the wild vs civilization,” said Lutter.
When the supernatural is involved, anything can be found in the wilds of British Columbia and this movie was filmed here. This province is well known for its Bigfoot legends than fears over the ‘wee folks, namely gnomes or fairies from European tradition — to which this film takes inspiration from. With this movie, there’s a certain type of ‘tree-folk’ known to cause problems and, according to these filmmakers, the sleepy township is sort of aware of but does not talk about, which adds to this film’s ominous tone.