The Wake - Short

02/14/2020 06:30

Film: The Wake

Year: 2017

Director: Rik Gordon

Writer: Rik Gordon

Starring: Liam Burke, Finaly Cormack and Joseph Murphy



I got the chance to check this out when the writer/director Rik Gordon reached out to me about if I was interested in seeing this. I was quite intrigued by this short as it is from Ireland and it seemed to be involving lore I don’t know a lot about. As always, I’m down to check out independent work as well. The synopsis here is a young Englishman is led to a traditional Irish wake, but soon finds out that some of the customs are not so traditional.

We start this off with a couple as they heading out into the middle of nowhere. Driving is Peter (Finlay Cormack) and he’s with Claire (Kathleen) his girlfriend. They arrive and we get an interesting scene where he goes to hold her hand and she pulls away. They go inside and Peter notices that a mirror is covered with a sheet and the clock has stopped that is below it on the mantle.

Peter then meets Jack (Liam Burke) who takes him into the kitchen and starts to feed him drinks. Being this is in Ireland, he seems to think that is the custom. He starts to feel funny and passes out. He wakes up and everything in the house is gone. He goes back into the room that the body is in and things take a pretty dark turn, much like the synopsis states.

Now I will admit, when I was watching this I got a feel of The Hole in the Ground as I know they had something with covering mirrors as well. I also believe that film is from Ireland if memory serves. It does feel like this is a bit different from that as to what that movie has in it. Being that I’m from the United States, it has intrigued to see what the reasons are to learn more about lore from this country.

Going from that, this movie has some pretty creepy things in it. I don’t want to spoil what happens, but not everything that we saw is as it seems. It really makes sense as things progress with what I mean. I’ll also include here that the effects were pretty creepy as well. We get to see Uncle Eugene (Joseph Murphy). I like what they did with him and it looked good for sure. There did seem to be a bit of CGI at the very end, but everything else seems to be done practical.

This runs at just shy of 10 minutes as well. I would say that if they wanted to flesh this out a bit more and give us a bit more back-story that would be something I’d watch for sure. As it sits though, I think that we get our set up, a solid reveal and twist into an ending that I can get down with. It is reminiscent of something I do enjoy in movies as well.

The acting was also pretty solid. I like that Cormack is being a good boyfriend and coming out to this wake for someone he never met in support of his girlfriend. Murphy does well and I like the reason as to why she is being cold toward him and how her character ends up. Burke brings a bit of being nice along with being creepy to this role which I dug. Murphy, Roma Tomelty and the rest of the cast also rounded this out for what was needed.

Now with that said, I thought this was a pretty solid short film. It works within its timeframe to build with an interesting set up, a solid reveal into an ending that I can really get down with. The acting is good in bringing these characters to life. I liked the effects that we got as well as the hints to the mythology that are there as well. If anything, I would be fine with this being extended out more to explain some of these customs. Being that our main character Peter isn’t from there, that does make sense as we’re as lost as he is being outsiders. The soundtrack fit for what was needed, I had no issues there. I would rate this as good and has me intrigued to check out more from Gordon.


My Rating: 8 out of 10

The Wake and available on Amazon Prime