Film Archive · The Strange & Unusual

The Captured Bird (2012)


A darkly poetic fable that begins with a little girl drawing figures of people with chalk on the cement of a playground. She takes notice of an unusual crack in the pavement that is seeping a mysterious black fluid, which she follows to an ominous building. Inside, she encounters several bizarre phenomena, including walls that bleed black and tentacles that emerge from the ceiling to touch her. She then witnesses the birth of five terrifying supernatural beings that threaten the existence of her world. via IMDb

Directed by Jovanka Vuckovic, executive produced by Guillermo del Toro and starring round-faced cutie Skyler Wexler, The Captured Bird is a 10-minute dark fantasy that gives a portion of what should’ve been a full feature in my mind. But now that I know del Toro’s responsible for the executive production it makes a lot of sense because he has an obvious imprint of intertwining imaginative little girls with violent fantasies and getting them trapped inside the world of dreams with no refuge in sight. And as twisted as it may be, it’s also brilliant and exposes an unsettling facet to the world of horrific fantasies as we know it.

Despite its short duration, The Captured Bird has a genuine creepiness that makes your skin crawl as the little girl follows the burbling pavement crack as it takes her further and further away from her parents. The abrupt ending is like a punch in the stomach because it leaves so many questions unanswered and leaves you wanting more. So much so that you forgive the somewhat unrefined CGI and Skyler’s acting because despite these, the end result is absolutely captivating.

If Vuckovic’s intention was to make me feel like I’m in a neverending nightmare than she fully succeeded. The house is old and terrifying the formation of the creatures is chilling especially because there’s no knowing where they came from, what is this house, what was that crack in the pavement and what was that disturbing sound in the end?

In a nutshell, The Captured Bird delivers big time. There’s no dialogue, only eerie visuals, and a minimalistic storyline which altogether makes a gateway to a world you don’t want to enter. Highly recommended.


14 thoughts on “The Captured Bird (2012)

  1. Great short 🙂 I loved watching this short film by director Jovanka Vuckovic 🙂 Despite being made in 2012, I really hope that she gets a chance at directing a feature length film somewhere down the line because she really is talented. Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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