Neon

By Mark J. Blackman | Sci-Fi
A man is forbidden from pursuing love. So he plans to escape his heartbreaking existence.

Elias is a man with a mysterious disfigurement and a strange power: he helps people meet and fall in love. But he’s forbidden from falling in love himself.

Yet he does love a woman named Mary — a modern, independent woman who has only known Elias over messages on dating sites and then over the phone. Frustrated with the parameters of their relationship, Elias can’t tell Mary who he really is or why they can’t meet. Stalked by a pair of mysterious men around the city, he decides to let Mary go and give her a chance at real love — in the only way he can.

Writer-director Mark J. Blackman, along with producer Roxanne Holman, has crafted an audacious, noirish urban thriller about forbidden love that mixes ambitious storytelling with moody visual atmospherics to create an immersive, visceral world.

Combining stylistic elements of urban sci-fi/fantasy with an emotional heart of a modern love story, the film frames the narrative through what’s essentially a break-up conversation, weaving in flashbacks to Elias’s origins and background, revealing his fascinating truth as a character and teasing a world that melds elements of the supernatural with science fiction. The revealing, vulnerable voiceover contrasts with the panache of the visuals, which move with the pulse of a London dancefloor, complete with hyper-saturated colors and kinetic, fluid editing.

But the core of the film is the love story, brought to life by deft performances by lead actors Joe Absolom — who British viewers may recognize from “EastEnders” — and Kerry Bennett, who play the doomed lovers with both the hard-boiled edge of a thriller and the intensity of romantic passion.

When the past catches up to the present — and Elias sets Mary free — the film then shifts into full thriller mode, and its ultra-stylish visuals, editing and propulsive musical score collide into an epic, even operatic crescendo.

“Neon” packs a feature’s worth of narrative into a short film, both in the writing and the production, and viewers will be left longing for some more time with the enigmatic, mysterious characters and world that Blackman has constructed. Impeccably crafted and cinematic on a scale that’s rare for a short film, “Neon” is transportive and sweeping in look and feel. It easily tantalizes the eye with confidence and bravura — but it also draws in the heart, making it all the more relatable and memorable.




You Might Also Like:

Sylvia

By Richard Prendergast | Drama
A single mother takes her family on a road trip. But it's to an unwanted destination.

Second Best

By Alyssa McClelland | Comedy
Twin sisters turn into rivals when one's gymnastics career steals the spotlight.

No More Wings

By Abraham Adeyemi | Drama
2 friends meet at their favorite fried chicken shop. But their lives have diverged.

Avarya

By Gokalp Gonen | Animation
A man is trapped on a spaceship after his robot overseer finds every planet uninhabitable.

Feeling Through (Oscars)

By Doug Roland | Drama
A homeless teen meets a deaf-blind man who changes his life forever...

Ernie

By Hadley Hillel | Drama
A man's suicide attempt rips a hole in the ceiling. Then he befriends the boy upstairs.

Dig Your Own Grave

By Kirk Larsen | Comedy
A man is forced to dig his own grave in the desert. But the ground is hard.

Call Connect

By Josiah Allen and Indianna Bell | Drama
A young helpline operator takes her first call and gets more than she expected.

More Than God

By Kev Cahill | Comedy
A devoted husband suspects his wife is cheating on him. Then he hides under the bed.

Welcome to Iron Knob

By Dave Wade | Comedy
A young boy accidentally shoots a stranger and the town tries to cover it up.

CODA

By Erika Davis-Marsh | Romance
A young dancer falls for a deaf guy, then tries to find her place in the world.

Toni With an I

By Marco Alessi | Drama
An awkward girl doesn't fit in at school. Then the Internet comes to save her.

The Things You Think I’m Thinking

By Sherren Lee | Drama
A burn-survivor goes on his first date after his accident.

Into the Silent Sea

By Andrej Landin | Sci-Fi
A Soviet cosmonaut who is stranded in space discovers a voice in the distance.

Infinite ft. George MacKay

By Connor O’Hara | Drama
A terminally-ill man has a plan to 'live on' and gets his friends to help.



Your favorite short films you haven't seen yet.

Inspiring and insightful. Entertaining and enlightening.
That's what you can expect here: no fluff. Just a steady
stream of the best films delivered to your inbox.