Nothing is quite what it seems in Dom Portalla and Ken Flott’s newest Kafkaesque short film, Nicky—and that’s what makes us view it with one eye on the screen, and the other on the nearest exit.
The abduction of his young brother, Nicky, causes an unnamed man (Ken Flott) to seek vigilante justice, years after the boy disappeared. It seems that Nicky vanished one day, right after his older brother’s wedding, and was never seen again. At least not in any tangible way, that is.
The man in question is an office worker of some unknown variety. A lonely and seething individual, he sits at his computer, cloistered in his three-walled cubicle. Every so often a female co-worker invites him to join her and their associates at a nearby bar, but he always refuses, pleading this excuse or that.
The screenplay that Flott and Portalla concoct is written so gleamingly illusive, and is so philosophically ambiguous, that the tale that emerges is wide open to interpretation. That, coupled with director Dom Portalla’s probing camera that gets disturbingly close to his lead character that we can practically see the workings of the vigilante’s mind, as his thoughts evolve and devolve into something unfathomable.
Equally fascinating is the abductee, Nicky, who comes in and out of existence in a manner that makes us question just who, or what, is the driving force of all that we’re experiencing.
Needless to say, viewers can expect chills— just as I’m enduring now— merely by reviewing this 32 minute marvel that begins and ends before we realize what just happened. I’d love to tell you what transpires at the very end, but fear I’d better not. So best see Nicky for yourself—if you’re quick enough…
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