It would be enough if the power behind The Cold Season existed within its mission as described by 18-year-old director Josiah Stendel..."“The goal of the film from the beginning was to use it as a tool to teach other aspiring filmmakers how to produce something of high production value and lasting significance on a shoestring budget."
It's a lofty goal lived into by Stendel's involvement with the Reel Difference Film School, a goal supported by the thousands of filmmakers and film devotees who ended up following the project via social media along with sponsors, such as Panera Bread and LensProToGo, who supported the indie project and embraced its mission.
That, in my book, would be enough to offer my own support to the film.
The clincher, however, is that The Cold Season actually succeeds in its goal by proving to other aspiring filmmakers that you can, in deed, produce something of high production value and lasting significance on a shoestring budget.
The Cold Season is a damn fine film.
Centered around an ex-cop, Detective Ivan Garetty (Tim Ross), tormented by his past and attempting to make peace in the company of the man, Len Povey (John Wells), he never caught.
Sound intrigued? You should be.
Written by Steve Miles, The Cold Season tells a riveting story and tells it incredibly well behind Stendel's confident, assured directing and the co-directing work of Silvio Wolf Busch. The two lead performances are compelling, practically beyond words, Wells's performance as noteworthy for his unspoken body language as it is for the words we finally here. As Detective Garetty, Tim Ross is all blustery confidence meets wistful resignation. He knows more than he's telling us, at least verbally, but we can practically read his story on his face as this 10-minute short unfolds.
Together? You can't help but want to see Ross and Wells act together again.
Co-lensed by Stendel with Austin R. Sheehan, The Cold Season is beautifully photographed and simply mesmerizing to watch. Jacqueline S. Boothe's original music is perfectly woven into the fabric of the film, adding emotion and energy and spark to a film that already sizzles with emotional intensity and excitement.
Kudos to Tim Miller for a sound mix that works, often an area that is the most vulnerable to flaws in an indie production but an area that works beautifully here.
The Cold Season is just getting ready to begin its festival run, the first couple of fest acceptances in the bag and soon to be announced, and that's a festival run you can easily expect to be lengthy and rewarding.
While The Cold Season would be worth your time for its noble mission alone, the good news is you'll also be rewarded with an incredibly engaging, memorable, and impactful short film that, indeed, should have a lasting significance for other aspiring filmmakers.
For more information on The Cold Season, visit the film's Facebook page linked to in the credits.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic