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The Independent Critic

Christine Depriest, China Doll, Georgiania Laverne Anthony, Sandy Lomax, Deaon Forever
Paula Kuria
41 Mins.

 "Aviary Blues" Released by Dreadmelon Pictures 

A well intended but not entirely successful 41-minute short from the Hoosier state, writer/director Paula Kuria's Aviary Blues is being released by Indy-based Dreadmelon Pictures on a DVD package that also includes a special feature called "Mental Health is Important," a subject matter that very much guides the short film and serves as its vital purpose.

The film centers around Dr. Stevens (Christine Depriest), who doesn't feel well and is over-inundated with her patients. Her husband is out of the country and will miss their wedding anniversary and, to top it all off, her staff is mocking the patients. As we quickly learn, however, mocking those you serve sets you up for some mighty powerful karma and "you reap what you sow" comes into play.

Will Dr. Stevens' husband make it back in time to save her mental status?

The major thing that Aviary Blues has going for it is that Paula Kuria, who works in the healthcare field in Indiana, is no doubt serious about the film's stated intention to impact the way we as a society view those living with mental illness. While I'm not entirely convinced that a comedy, especially a short one, was the way to accomplish that mission, it's hard not to admire Kuria's ambitious mission for the film and her broadly written film that very much pokes fun at those would poke fun of some of society's more vulnerable citizens.

There's also no doubt that Kuria, despite approaching the subject matter from a more humorous standpoint, is steadfastly serious about her message and views it of the utmost importance. The humor itself is incredibly pointed and it's hard to mistake the messages underneath the mania.

While Aviary Blues isn't an entirely successful film, its low-budget production values obvious and performances hit-and-miss, it's a promising film with a promising cast that makes me anxious to see what comes next from the team at Dreadmelon Pictures.

Written by Richard Propes 
The Independent Critic