A Haunted Wood Disturbs a Jogger In This Short

Line Signal, by John Panton and Meat Bingo, is under ten minutes long, but is wonderfully set up and paid off. Beautifully shot, and strangely complex, it really rewards re-watching. Piecing it all together — if its meant to be — is a rewarding exercise.

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It's thoroughly disturbing, even if I wasn't looking for extra reasons to avoid running and the outdoors.

Here's a breakdown of some of the visual effects by Graham Salisbury:

[via Vimeo Channel Kuriositas]

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DISCUSSION

A long, long time ago, ghost stories were about the memories of locations, and they often weren't in-your-face scary. Often they had a somber, sad feeling. An uncanny quality, as opposed to what you see in what so often passes for ghost stories now. (I love the films Poltergeist and Ghostbusters, but they may have ruined ghost stories for a generation.)

This short film—let me be the defender I don't see in the comments that appear to have posted thus far—reminds me of the kind of story M.R. James, Wilkie Collins, or Charles Dickens might tell on a Christmas Eve if any of them had been born thirty or forty years ago instead of in a different century, and if telling ghost stories on Christmas Eve were still an honored tradition. It isn't a frightening story, there isn't really a plot, we don't really know a thing about the characters; and yet it works as what it is: an unearthly vignette, a tiny account of how someone's life intersected with the inexplicable and was changed by it. Not a chilling Ghost Story of an Antiquary like "The Mezzotint", or a darkly comic one like "Casting The Runes", but nevertheless something Provost James might have slipped into one of his anthologies if women jogged and used cell phones a century ago.

It is worth a look. I'm not sure it's necessarily a great piece, but it's an affecting one, and I think it hearkens back to a worthy but unfashionable kind of story.