Strapped

STRAPPED is the story of the past and present colliding for a corrupt undercover Chicago detective. When Bill finds himself strapped with an explosive device around his neck inside a Hummer on a lone alley, it's a race against time for the bomb squad and his partner, Hudson, to save his life and put the pieces of the puzzle together in the midst of a tense hostage crisis. Joe Farina and Tom McElroy headline this gritty ticking bomb of a thriller about buried truths.

  • Suk Dhaliwal
    Director
  • Suk Dhaliwal
    Writer
  • Mike Vanderwyst
    Producer
    Game Night, 3:16
  • Joe Farina-Associate Producer
    Producer
  • Joe Farina
    Key Cast
    "Detective Bill Monroe"
    Paranormal Island, RiffRaff, Debt of the Heart, Chasing Robert, Devil's Dominoes
  • Tom McElroy
    Key Cast
    "Detective James Hudson"
    Dark Knight, Prison Break, Chicago Fire, Chicago Code
  • Kevin Lingle
    Key Cast
    "SWAT Commander/Priest"
    Critical Nexus. Henchman
  • Ted LeBlang
    Key Cast
    "Field Sergeant"
    Belleville, Rise and Fall of Their American Dream
  • LJ Hischier
    Key Cast
    "Bill's wife"
    Outpost
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Drama
  • Runtime:
    17 minutes 55 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 12, 2014
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
  • 2016 San Francisco Comic Con Film Festival
    San Francisco
    United States
  • 2016 Tampa Bay Comic Con Film Festival
    Tampa Bay, FL
    United States
    August 6, 2016
  • 2016 Indiana Comic Con Film Festival
    Indianapolis
    United States
    April 29, 2016
    Won for Best VFX, Nominated for Best Narrative Short
  • 2016 Ozarks Shorts Film Festival

    United States
  • 2015 Boston Independent Film Festival
    Boston, MA
    United States
    July 15, 2015
    Best Short Film
  • 2015 Goldensun Film Festival
    Zebbug
    Malta
  • 2015 Buffalo Niagara Film Festival
    Tonawanda, NY
    United States
    April 18, 2015
  • 2015 Los Angeles CineFest
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    March 31, 2015
  • 2015 Pittsburgh Independent Film Festival
    Pittsburgh, PA
    United States
    June 28, 2015
  • 2015 Louisville International Film Festival
    Louisville, KY
    United States
    October 2, 2015
  • 2015 Route 66 Film Festival
    Springfield, IL
    United States
    November 7, 2015
  • 2017 Isle of Portland Short Film Festival
    Isle of Portland
    United Kingdom
    April 16, 2017
Director Biography - Suk Dhaliwal

Suk Dhaliwal hails from Malaysia. The son of civil servants, he found escape from the crushing pursuit of academia through the films of the French New Wave and Hollywood genre films.

Inspired to become a rule-breaking filmmaker, he dedicated himself to learning the rules so that he might break them with some artistic flair. This proved unsuccessful, so he enrolled in Southern Illinois University where he made one stylish and inscrutable film.

Suk wrote several screenplays and made Strapped his first short film after a very long absence from filmmaking. With Strapped in the release circuit, he is currently in production with his next short, El Sicario, and is also developing his first feature.

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Director Statement

The genesis for Strapped coalesced in my mind during one bitter Chicago winter when I noticed a number of people trapped in their vehicles during a blizzard. I imagined what they were thinking in their prolonged entrapment. Dwelling on this thought further, I wondered what it would be like to be caught in a life and death dilemma inside your vehicle and the idea of a strapped bomb slowly worked its way in. What would you final thoughts be like as a result?

Chicago also has a history and unsavory reputation for corruption, sometimes undeservedly so. It’s hard to do a Chicago-themed story without that element in play at some level, perhaps because it makes for great drama and intrigue. Combining both these elements, I realized I had a story about corruption through the eyes of a stained Chicago cop.

The challenge of doing this story as a short was its visual nature since a lot of backstory was needed to explain how our main character arrived at the point he is in the story. We decided that because of the form, we could dispense with the backstory and provide a visual impression of certain story points to give us an immersion into our main character’s mindset and point of view.

We were lucky to find two strong leads in Joe Farina and Tom McElroy. Their dynamism and professionalism were a godsend and I’m thrilled with what they gave in their performances. There is an authentic sense of the everyman and woman in all the performances, which I really love, down to all the supporting players.

The post-production period for Strapped was very long and it’s a relief and pleasure to get it done so that the creative contributions of everyone involved can be appreciated and honored. Ultimately, the greatest achievement is that Strapped finds the audience it deserves and it creates a visceral, emotional ride.