Cabrito

Despite sayings like misery loves company and two can live as cheaply as one, there's nothing at all fun or cute about living in poverty. In Cabrito, one young man (Samir Hauaji) is trapped in the most abject poverty as he struggles to keep himself and his mother fed and with a roof over their heads. But while the son suffers mainly in silence, his mother can't stop telling him over and over what a failure he is. He's a terrible son who can't even put food on the table, and all he has to look forward to is a trip straight to hell, since he refuses to follow his mother's own warped religious beliefs.

But he at least has a girlfriend, so that's good news, right? Except they can't afford to get married and she has to support herself by working as a prostitute even though she's pregnant. With her, the young man lets out the anger he keeps inside around his mother, so they scream at each other a lot but maybe that's their way of showing affection. The only good news is that even though she can't stop getting in little digs against her son, Mom seems to be looking forward to a grandchild.

But the son is also tormented while he sleeps -- whenever he closes his eyes he has terrible dreams, and sooner or later anyone would break under that stress. And the way he breaks is both gruesome and fascinating. There's a nightmarish quality to the entire movie, expertly portrayed despite being both just twenty minutes long and also done on a micro budget. With convincing acting and a knack of being gory without going over the top, this is a tantalizing beginning to a trilogy of short films that detail one unlucky man's descent into horror.

Image: 
Mom on one of her rants. She looks pretty evil, doesn't she?

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