Trauma. Director/screenwriter Lieke Bezemer knows this subject well and is brave enough to pour it into her art. Films like this are so impactful and important (even though it is only just over six minutes long) because it makes people feel like they are not alone. Opens a conversation. A much needed one.

Echo, in a visually stunning way, deals with Bezemer’s personal trauma. She was sexually assaulted. A trauma like that leaves a deep mark. Many have this mark. The damage is horrible. People deal with it in different ways. Few so beautifully and moving as Bezemer.

Here the trauma left behind by sexual assault has been linked to nature. Looking rather beautiful, but also cold, dark and dangerous at the same time. Don’t be fooled by the beauty or calm exterior as people, like nature, are experts at hiding the damage/danger underneath. The stories of what actually went on are expertly hidden underneath.

The visuals, which were filmed in Hokkaido, Japan, are stark and at times breathtaking. Bezemer’s passion for the natural world comes through full blast here. The truth of what is happening underneath the surface is captured by coming at the same scene from different angles. All beautifully shot by cinematographer Nick Tucker. Amazingly this is his first film.

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