A young girl has to spend the day with her brother, mother, and over-bearing grandmother during a weekly trip to the cemetery in the short film Libertyville. Check out our thoughts right here.
Families can be ever so strange. You can find yourself attached by blood to some bizarre individuals, along with some crazy family traditions. Writer and star Suzana Norberg allows us to take a peek into her childhood with the short film Libertyville. Yes, this is based on a true story. Her true story.
Suzi (Keziah Wall) is like every normal 11-year old girl, in that she wants to see and play with her friends. Only, coming from a Serbian family with a strict Grandmother (Suzana Norberg), her plans always consists of a weekly visit to her grandfather’s grave at the Serbian cemetery Libertyville. This visit is more than just laying flowers down and paying their respects, the family, including Suzi’s mother (Boyana Bolta) and her brother Tommy (Conor Kowalski), also partake in signing at the grave and putting out tables and chairs for a picnic.
Through the use of flashbacks, we get to see how nice of a man Suzi’s Grandfather (Dragan Sutalo) was, and how mean her grandmother was to him. There is a quick scene in which we actually see some of the abuse, with the Grandmother shouting and striking her husband over the head with a loaf of bread, just because he bought one without her say so. We also get to see Suzi at her Grandfather’s bed. He’s dying of stomach cancer, but still makes time to try and make his granddaughter smile. It’s very sweet to see.
I have to point out here that the team behind Libertyville, including director Devin Scott, have done a great job of recreating the look and style of Wisconsin in 1973. We have the cars on the road coming straight out of that time period, as do all the clothing the main characters wear. A lot of effort has gone on to make the short look like a true period short.
Props also have to go to the make-up team who helped make Suzana Norberg look like a genuine Grandmother. Norberg, who has over forty acting credits to her name, looks fresh-faced in her IMDB profile picture and vastly different from the character she portrays in Libertyville.
Whilst it does have some dramatic moments, Libertyville for the most part is played out as a comedy, with humour throughout. These comedic moments go hand-in-hand with the choice of the score by Nicholas Patrick.
We enjoyed Libertyville, and with the short now doing the festival circuit, we’re sure many others will enjoy it too.