[Short Film Review] Lucy's Tale


Puberty is a hard time for teenagers. It’s also a time ripe for horror movies. From Ginger Snaps to Carrie, puberty is often minded as a metaphor for change in horror. In ALTER’s latest short film Lucy’s Tale, Lucy (Irina Bravo) is navigating social pressures while going through puberty. It opens with her in a clothing boutique, trying on bras. As she unsnaps her bra to try on others, tissue paper falls out. It doesn’t help that her mother calls from offscreen, “Do you think you have anything with a little extra padding?”

Meanwhile, at school, her best friend Bethany (Mary Nepi) has ditched her for the “cool kids” (i.e., The Hot Mean Girls) and while Lucy wishes her breasts would grow, something else is growing down her back. And she seems to be developing some kind of supernatural power. Navigating the mean girl clique and a potential first love with high school hottie Brad (Zach Fifer), Lucy begins to realize she’s not like the other girls…and maybe she likes that.

Written and directed by Chelsea Lupkin, Lucy’s Tale is cut from the same clothe as Stephen King’s Carrie and has a number of obvious and subtle homages to both the De Palma movie and the original source material. And like that story, Lucy sort of becomes an unlikely and yet likable villain, as she gets back at her tormentors and discovers the joys of sexuality. At only about 16 minutes, the story feels a bit rushed in that when it was over, I kind of wanted more. I wanted to see what would become of Lucy after the climax (pun sorta intended) of this short film.

The good news is that you can watch this right now, as when this article goes live it will have its ALTER debut on YouTube. Watch it below and let me know what you think: