Massey University College of Creative Arts Snare

  • Te Kapa Tauira / Student Team
    Kennedy Turner, Paris Renalson, Morgan Vandergoes, Lydia Phua, Jared Nichols, Tane MacDonald, Isaac Borgman, Travis Kaandorp, Anton Ward, Jacob Waipara, Grace Bush, Joshua Fitch, Tom Ellingham
  • Kaitautoko / Contributors
    Devyn Fowles, Cameron Hartley, Sebastian McBride, Olivier Fletcher, Vanessa Howe, Jade Bennett, Claudia Gilkison, Shiloh Henderson, Izaac Beever, Jessie Chamberlain, Gabby D’Souza, Martin McPhee, Antonio Lim, Bailey Harding, Fiona Elett, Jack Harriss, Natasha Coleman, Michael Cox
  • Kaiako / Lecturers
    Dr Scott Wilson, Mathew Knight

Originally created for the purpose of entering genre film festivals, Snare is a student-led short film, following a young adult, Simon, who begins to question his connection with his family and their intentions after feeling trapped within his own home. Through a non-linear structure and distinct visual style, Snare explores the effects of mental health and the impact it has on both the individual and their family.

At first, our intention was to draw upon the well-developed conventions found in Horror and Physiological Thrillers to establish a true love-letter narrative that fans of the genre would enjoy. Through the development, however, we realised the opportunity we had to use these conventions to further a more meaningful narrative. Our goal then shifted to produce an alternate perspective of the topic of mental health, and it’s portrayal in mainstream cinema.
As Thrillers often find their content in the reflection of society’s fears of the ‘other’, Snare aimed to deconstruct the villainization of mental illness and the exploitation of it. Instead, we found the horror through the impact mental health has on the individual, rather than the individual themselves.

The key component to Snare’s structure, horror, and style is the protagonist's hallucinations and memory loss that clouds his view of reality. Our design of the film, both visual and auditory, was carefully considered to work in tandem with these elements. The original score and soundscape features works which aim to mimic the hallucination aspect of our story and create the feeling of disorientation and tension.

Shooting with a 4k RED Scarlet allowed us to work at a more dynamic colour range and make colour an integral part of our design. Both grounded and vibrant colour palettes were used to signify the state of our protagonist’s mind, and create a colourful, and distinctive visual style which could stand out from the traditionally dark palette’s found in Thrillers.

The non-linear element in this film was purposely crafted to help establish this feeling of impaired clarity and judgement. While serving as an artistic representation, the lack of linearity to Snare is a device used to manipulate both our protagonist and the audience into questioning what we see on-screen.