Blake Labriola’s Careless is a short film that shows the dangers in bringing your work home with you. Bethany (Iris Kohl) is a young nurse who has been living with a former patient, the elderly Katrina (Joette Waters). At first, the relationship seems on the up-and-up; Katrina has baked Bethany a birthday cake and is hoping to spend time with her to celebrate. Problem is, Bethany already has plans.
From there, the film shifts to give us a better look at who Katrina is, basically a lazy, manipulative person who feigns injury to be doted on by Bethany. Her attachment to her young friend is slowly slipping away, however, as Bethany becomes pregnant and the newborn child enters the household. Based on all that we’ve seen leading up to the child’s arrival, we know things are probably not going to go smoothly.
First, the good: the actor who plays Katrina, Joette Waters, is absolutely outstanding. Her portrayal is both feeble and menacing at the same time, and her Katrina is like a malicious ghoul that haunts the apartment. How Bethany could never notice that something is “off” is surprising. For a film that takes place entirely in one location with the same two actors, it’s a major plus that one of the actors is so above-and-beyond.
On the negative side, the film suffers from a climax that, while fitting for the Katrina character, feels completely forced for Bethany. Without giving away any details, let’s just say while the impetus for the film’s final turn may’ve needed Bethany, her presence up until the end seems out of place. Additionally, on the technical side, a headphone-adorned crewmember has a cameo scene at one point, and the few times you catch a glimpse of the baby… well, you figure out real quick why you’re only catching a glimpse.
Careless is a solid short film that is elevated by the performance of Joette Waters, though its story starts to crack in its final minutes. The lesson here is to be more aware of who you let into your life, especially if you’re going to have a kid.
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