Title: Sophie

Also known as:

Year: 2007

Genre: Short / Drama / Thriller

Language: German

Runtime: 21 min

Director: Vlado Priborsky

Writer: Vlado Priborsky


Sophie, upon the decision of a divorce, decides to calm herself down and takes a relaxing trip to the woods. But after an unfortunate turn of events, this calming trip turns into a nightmare.

Our thoughts:
To be honest, what interested me the most in this short film was that it seemed to stray away a bit from something we see a lot in German films - splatter. I was looking for a nice little short film that'd give me thrills outside of bloodspraying effects and cheese. "Sophie" was definitely a step in the right direction. It's not filled with gore, it's not silly and it's not going too far for the sake of it.

I really wish the DVD would've came with subtitles on the extra material as I think it would've given me a bit more, because that's one thing I felt about this movie. The story is quick and to the point, as it should be with a short film, but it's also as if something is missing. We have Sophie, a woman who is seperating with her husband but he doesn't want to. Meanwhile she is also clearly dragging along baggage from her life from before this man. She needs some time away from everything and goes out to the woods. Sophie falls down from a rock and is hurt, only to get stuck in a trap straight after. This leaves her handicapped on the ground, struggling to get away before her body decides to give up.

I think the main story of Sophie in the woods is very interesting, but I couldn't really get into the backstory of her divorce and previous ex-boyfriend. It wasn't handled well enough to become a driving force, instead it threw us out of the terror of having Sophia stuck in the woods. It was good to give us a reason as to why she went into the woods in the first place, but I think the focus should still be her struggling for her life in the woods. Therefor the overall story got a bit weaker than it could have - it's hard for us to truly feel for her when we're thrown out of it through-out. Still, I think the scenes actually in the woods were very good and fairly intense.

Most short films are similar in a way - they know so well that the film is going to be short so they never develop a fully functioning story, instead it's always leading to one semi-big climax, where the first two thirds are just working towards that. Yes, it's pretty typical storytelling, but at the same time I think people should use the entire runtime as much as possible and not be stuck with thinking "it's just a short film" - you can still make it exciting through-out! What's the point of bringing this up in this review then? Well, in "Sophie" it actually works with the typical structure - as mentioned it could even have needed LESS of it. Which is unusual. In "Sophie" it's the build-up that makes it a film worth watching, and that's always a pleasure to see.

"Sophie" suffers from a few flaws, but I think overall it is still a solid film. It's never as intense as it could have been but that's mostly because we are taken out of the thrill from time to time. This film is about a woman stuck in a trap and not being able to get away, so she starts thinking of ways to get out of the trap. This particular plot device is something we've seen a lot - there's a very typical way of getting out of being trapped with your foot. Can you guess what? Yeah, you got it. But that doesn't keep "Sophie" from being both a good and entertaining short film.

Positive things:
- Has some blood but never ridiculous amounts.
- Good acting from Jasmin Devi.
- Looks pretty good!
Negative things:
- I didn't care about the backstory as to why she was in the woods, it just took me out of it.
- Not the most original short.

Gore: 1.5/5
Nudity: 0/5
Story: 2.5/5
Effects: 2/5
Comedy: 0/5

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