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Top Shorts Review: Platonic

Written and directed by David Leidy, Platonic is a four-time Top Shorts winner (May 2019): Best Crime Film (David Leidy), Best Supporting Actress (Rebecca Spiro), Best Editing (Dylan Riviera) and Honorable Mention: Original Story (David Leidy).

Let's start with the synopsis: After dreaming about a murder scene, a professor discovers a pregnant woman in her house. When she enters, details about the crime resurface.

Rebecca Spiro as Carol and Dasha Leidy as Aubrey

The film opens with a series of shots, in what seems to be an affair (sex scene) that leads to pregnancy. The woman (Aubrey, played by Dasha Leidy) looks at herself in the mirror, letting the audience guess her thoughts. Did she do something wrong? Does she feel guilty? At this point, the viewer can't tell a lot about the character. Although it's just the beginning of the film, it's clear that director David Leidy uses the camera and music to tell a complicated story. This way, he makes the audience wanting to know more.

After over 2 minutes with zero dialogue, we get a long monologue by the main character, Aubrey. The fast cuts and extreme close up shots provide a deeper meaning to the character's controversial text, and hint that Aubrey has a troubled mind, to say the least.

Dasha Leidy as Aubrey

Things get complicated as Aubrey arrives at Carol's (played by Rebecca Spiro) house. An immediate conflict is created when the two characters claim they live in that house.

The interaction between them starts awkwardly, and becomes even more disturbing as the story progresses. If the viewer has to pick a side, it would be Carol's ("You seem to be a perfectly reasonable person, but..."), as she appears to be normal.

The scene ends with a twist that builds up the tension, right before all the dots connect, when the husband arrives.

Mark Thomas as Karl

The acting is solid. Every character in this film is rounded and adds value to the story. Aubrey is the most interesting character, obviously - as the protagonist she takes the viewer on a mysterious journey. The other characters are well written, and well played. Rebecca Spiro shines as Carol, and the way she confronts Aubrey and manipulates her makes the two rivals equally strong.

Lesley Solarte as the mysterious woman

What we loved most, is the director's vision and freedom to tell the story in his own way, with no limits or rules, from the lighting and camera movement to the editing decisions. Leidy manages to create an impressive film that offers the audience a fascinating viewing experience, with mysterious characters and plot twists.

Writer-Director David Leidy

About the director:

David Leidy is an award winning filmmaker (Best Director, Best Cult Classic Film, Best Story, Best Editor, Best 48 Hour, Best Noir, and Best Mystery Film Award Winner at multiple festivals among many more awards) and experienced founder (Founder of Eidetic Pictures and Founding Member of revived film society Delta Kappa Alpha where Spielberg, Hitchcock, Arthur Miller and Lucille Ball were members) with a drive to share daring stories that challenge modern perceptions and beliefs.

When he was fresh out of high school he had his feature film Bound premiere in front of nearly 200 audience members at Landmark Theatres after receiving coverage from Fox News. David later worked for multiple studios in Los Angeles where he gave feedback for projects including Last Voyage of Demeter and Dandelion Wine to such executive producers as Mike Medavoy at Phoenix Pictures (Shutter Island) and Kevin Iwashina and Ross Dinerstein at Preferred Content (Jiro Dreams of Sushi).

David later helped found professional cinema society Delta Kappa Alpha (DeKA) for NYU where he held the position of Cinema Literacy and Professional Chair. While serving these positions, he organized and hosted classic screenings and cinema events both exclusive to members and open to the public. During his active years in DeKA he was also enrolled in full time courses at NYU where he earned his degree in Literature with a minor in Creative Writing. Furthermore he had many of his articles as a Staff Writer for Washington Square News published in its print newspaper and on affiliated websites.

Before jumpstarting a fully fledged career as a writer, director and producer David was an assistant for Emmy award winning writer and director Justin Lerner (Automatic Hate, Official Selection at SXSW). Soon after, David went on to write, produce and direct Atonia which had a cast and crew of over a hundred people leading to such projects as becoming a cowriter for the film Paradise starring Cortney Palm (Zombeavers). Furthermore he was selected for a position as freelance producer and cameraman on a short highlight video for Participant Media (Waiting for Superman) that later aired on Pivot TV.

Currently David resides in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter and spends most of his hours working for his production company Eidetic Pictures and multimedia company PalmVine. At the moment he puts his focus on developing an original series with cocreator Greg Paul (Seven Devils Conference Winner and multiple-time National Playwrights Conference Finalist).


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