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CROOKEDFINGER

NY Premiere

Directors: Julia Halperin and Jason Cortlund

United States, 2023, 92 min

Festival Year:2024

Category:Narrative Feature

Genres:Mystery, Thriller, Supernatural, Psychological, Suspense

Cast:Paula Jon DeRose, Sigrid: Welker White, Nico: Blake DeLong

Crew:Writer: Jason Cortlund; Director of Photography: Jonathan Nastasi; Producers: Julia Halperin, Todd Remis; Line Producer: Alecia Orsini Lebeda; Co-executive Producer: Gerry Pass; Casting: Ashley Skomurski (MA) & Kate Sprance (NY); Production Design: Lily Bolles; Sound Recordist: Yvonne Corbett; Stunts: Amy Greene; Editor: Eva Claire; Score: Chris Brokaw; Sound Design: Eric Masunaga; Colorist: Halszka Brzoska; Production Companies: Small Drama, Salem Street Entertainment; Image Postproduction: Fixafilm; Sound Mixing: Modulus Studios

Email:smalldrama@gmail.com

Web:smalldrama.com/

Synopsis

After the sudden deaths of her aging parents, Maria Gallucci returns to her childhood home on Cape Cod (Massachusetts). When Maria's estranged brother Nico (and his older girlfriend Sigrid) show up to help sort out the estate, tensions soon rise about how to best sell the decrepit house. While Maria and Sigrid forge an unexpected friendship, Nico's emotional volatility becomes increasingly unstable. Is it the effects of an old brain injury, the toll of revisiting past family traumas, or something related to the strange vibrating hum that only Maria seems to hear?

About the directors

Julia Halperin - Julia Halperin received a Gotham Award nomination for Breakthrough Director for NOW FORAGER (2012), which premiered at IFF Rotterdam and New Directors/New Films. Her follow-up feature BARRACUDA premiered in competition at SXSW and Cairo IFF in 2017 and was acquired by Samuel Goldwyn/Orion/MGM. Her work has been supported by Venice Biennale College, The Gotham, Austin Film Society, IFF Rotterdam CineMart, MacDowell, and Yaddo. Julia is an assistant professor of directing and production at Emerson College.

Filmography

Jason Cortlund - Jason Cortlund wrote, co-directed, and starred in the Gotham-nominated drama NOW FORAGER (2012). His follow-up feature BARRACUDA premiered in competition at SXSW and Cairo IFF in 2017 and was acquired by Samuel Goldwyn/Orion/MGM. Jason was a postgraduate fellow at the James A. Michener Center for Writers; his work has been supported by Venice Biennale College, The Gotham, Austin Film Society, IFF Rotterdam CineMart, Centrum Institute, MacDowell, and Yaddo.

Filmography

Filmmakers' note

The feeling of being alone in one's own family is a specific kind of terror. CROOKEDFINGER uses elements of slow-burn suspense to explore this underlying feeling of dread, one that generates from a liminal space between the psychological and the supernatural.

Like all the problems with an aging house, there are some things you just can't fix. CROOKEDFINGER is about breaking attachments to the old stories that haunt us—and finding the strength to start over again from zero.

We developed the script for actors we knew—Paula Jon DeRose and Welker White—around the seasonal landscapes of off-season Cape Cod. We made the film with a small crew in an isolated location, including key collaborators from our previous two features—most notably cinematographer Jonathan Nastasi and composer Chris Brokaw.

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