Forest Quaglia, Sofia Goorno, Chris Whitcomb, Ian Brownhill, Kaleal Cerafici, Matt Doucette, Samantha Magnarelli
Teddy Pryor, Forest Quaglia
Forest Quaglia, Frank Quaglia
Movie Review: Map Heist
Fresh off its world premiere at the Massachusetts Independent Film Festival, Map Heist is an entertaining little adventure short about three friends - Bellamy (Forest Quaglia), Ava (Sofia Goorno), and Oliver (Chris Whitcomb) - and ruthless "townies" who fight over a legendary pirate's map that is said to mark buried treasure from the infamous shipwreck of the Whydah Gally. The townies - Chase (Ian Brownhill), Dill (Matt Doucette), and Mike (Kaleal Cerafici) - accidentally discover that the three friends may very well have discovered said map and become determined to recover it for themselves by any means necessary.
At just under 14 minutes, Map Heist is an engaging short film beautifully shot by Matt Doucette in a way that amps up the spirited adventure and also captures the film's beauty. The film's ensemble cast is uniformly strong and they all have a believable chemistry with one another. Both Quaglia and Goorno are particularly strong here, though there's not a weak link within the film.
Inspired by the Outer Banks Netflix series, Map Heist has a similar sense of style and commitment to escapist, young adult action with a little more bark than bite but still quite a bit of fun and very easy to watch. I could easily see Map Heist being similarly episodic with its engaging characters and entertainment value.
With its first festival appearance behind it, Map Heist should easily find a home on the indie/microcinema festival circuit and it will be fun to watch these young actors in the future. It's always a blast watching talented young performers on their way up, especially those like Quaglia who take the initiative and create opportunities for themselves.
Watch for Map Heist at a festival near you.
Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic