The Lone Wolf

Late night radio talk shows have meant that you never know what you are going to get. Even with the seven second or so delay the questions or discussions are never predictable or even controllable. It is kinda like the Wild West of radio. In this Portuguese short film directed by Filipe Melo, you get exactly that. It is filled with mystery, chat, tension, and the past rearing its ugly head.

Viva FM’s late night radio host Vitor Lobo (Andriano Luz) is known as the Long Wolf. Partly due to his name and partly due to the fact that he works alone late at night. Right around the witching hour of midnight, his nightly show is going in the usual fashion with callers and him chatting amicably about the nightly topic, which is emotions. Then in the space of one call, everything changes.

Lobo is talking to a male caller and as the conversation goes on he is told that the voice on the other end of the line is someone he used to know. The caller wants to catch up on old times. Soon the tone of the chat changes as the caller accuses Lobo of something horrific. Now things have gotten rather tense.

As the story unfolds, despite the fact that the entire 23 minutes of the short film takes place in one static location – a dark radio station booth – and the camera is focused on one actor, it is never dull. That is because of the nature of the story and the excellent performance by actor Adriano Luz. The entirety of the film rests on his shoulders and he triumphantly carries the burden.

Melo’s film shows that you do not have to have a ton of elements to make a solid film. Just a few done well will suffice. You have a superior acting performance, dynamic cinematography and a story filled with tension. All this adds up to a film in which you will be holding your breath for at least half of its run time. It is further proof that secrets kill.

The short film has screened at a dozen or so film festivals and won a handful of prizes, so it has qualified to be in consideration for an Oscar nomination in the Live Action Short Film category.