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The Independent Critic

Wam Siluka Jr., Craig Young, Jam Morrison, Anthony Lund (Narrator)
Johnny Herbin
7 Mins.

 "Mountain" the Latest Short from Up-And-Comer Johnny Herbin  

In 2015, relative newcomer Johnny Herbin created an indie storm with his short film Electric Faces, picking up a handful of indie festival prizes and a BAFTA Awards, Scotland nomination as Best Writer in their Best New Talent awards. 

So, it's not surprising that Herbin's writing is once again strong in his latest short film, Mountain, the tale of three U.S. soldiers (played by Wam Siluka Jr., Craig Young, and Jam Morrison) fighting for survival after getting stuck behind enemy lines during World War II. 

Filmed in black-and-white with a gritty clarity by D.P. Darren Eggenschwiler, Mountain tells a sparse story more dependent upon its imagery than spoken dialogue, though the old cliche' that war is hell both physically and psychologically is ever present here. Oliver Lodges' original music heightens the drama brought to life by the film's trio of lead actors, their camaraderie constantly evident yet their own individual battles brought to life rather matter-of-factly. 

While I will confess to having found the use of a non-American actor as narrator a tad distracting, Mountain is nonetheless an impactful film, a slice of war life in which tragedy never feels that far away and where even the most casual circumstances can have a permanent impactful. There's a casualness to it all that somehow still reminds you that none of this is actually casual. 

The recently completed Mountain should easily continue Herbin's success on the film festival circuit and the film should have no trouble finding an audience at indie and micro-fests in both Europe and the U.S. If you get a chance, check out Mountain. 

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic