Experiencing Interruptions?


Gail Morris is lonely. She lost her husband in a tragic work accident a year ago and now she’s in a solitary job working as a security guard. When she comes across Joseph, a homeless man scribbling madness on the cold, concrete walls of a bunker she thinks nothing of it. But Gail soon learns that Joseph wasn’t always a broken, tormented man. He used to be a neuro scientist trying to save the lives of those doomed with Alzheimers. But his rogue experiments led to his downfall and afflicted him with an unbearable curse. His scribblings are recollections of the nightmarish predictions he sees in his sleep. Gail sets out to help him and to turn his curse into a gift that will save lives. But not all lives can be saved. And not all dreams are free.

  • April Phillips
    Big Business
  • April Phillips
    Letter For Hope, Utu Pihikete, The Halfway House, Big Business, Motel
  • Godiva Productions Limited
    Letter For Hope, Utu Pihikete
  • April Phillips
    Key Cast
    The Lovely Bones, Letter For Hope, Utu Pihikete, Eternity, Girl vs Boy, The Lost Children, Duggan
  • Chris Ryan
    Key Cast
    The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe, The Lord Of The Rings, The Lord Of The Rings 3, Xena, The Lost Children
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Sci-Fi, Horror, Fantasy, Drama
  • Runtime:
    13 minutes 31 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 1, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    15,000 NZD
  • Country of Origin:
    New Zealand
  • Country of Filming:
    New Zealand
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • 21st Fantasia International Film Festival
    August 1, 2017
  • Horror Hound Weekend Film Festival
    United States
    March 18, 2017
  • Fantastic Planet International Film Festival
    December 3, 2017
    Independent Spirit Award (Shorts)
  • Hollywood Boulevard Film Festival
    Los Angeles
    United States
    Best Foreign Short Film
  • Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards
    Los Angeles
    United States
    October 18, 2016
    North American Premiere
    Best Horror Short Foreign
  • Ouchy Film Awards
    Nominated Best Director
  • Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards
    Los Angeles
    United States
    Winner Best Sound Design
  • Indiefest Film Awards
    La Jolla
    United States
    Award of Excellence Special Mention
  • Accolade Global Film Awards
    La Jolla
    United States
    Award of Merit Special Mention
  • Best Shorts Film Awards

    United States
    Award of Excellence
  • WorldFest
    United States
    April 21, 2017
    Platinum REMI Award
  • Women In Film & Television International Shorts Showcase

    United States
    March 8, 2017
  • Global Independent Film Awards 2017

    United States
    Bronze Medal Best Sci-Fi Film
  • Madrid International Film Festival
    July 8, 2017
    Nominated for Best Lead Actress Short Film & Best Original Screenplay Short Film
  • Terror-Fi Film Festival
    New Zealand
    November 23, 2017
  • Short Film Awards
    New York
    United States
    Best Director (7 nominations in total)
Director Biography - April Phillips

REM is the directorial debut of award winning actress, producer and script writer April Phillips. April wrote and co-produced the short films "Letter For Hope" and "Utu Pihikete" which both screened a numerous US and New Zealand film festivals and garnered several short film awards. Both films are currently screening on Air New Zealand's inflight entertainment programme. April has been writing for stage, radio and film for 20 years and holds a Master's Degree in Scriptwriting. She is one of New Zealand's most licensed playwrights.

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Director Statement

The human urge to save lives is very strong. For some it leads them to careers in medicine, rescue or science. For others, it may be a sudden, startling opportunity to be a hero. This is a story about that urge.

I wanted to tell a tale that has supernatural and fantastical elements and to explore a story with a dark underbelly. But, as with all my writing for film and theatre, I am compelled to examine the human psyche. Moral dilemmas. The flaws that make us vulnerable or bad. The strengths that empower us and inspire others.

Here are two disparate and tragic characters attempting to harness and exploit the power of prediction, but battling the unforeseen. Their relationship is a muddle of mistrust, empathy, excitement and fear.

Our primary location at the historic Fort Ballance gun emplacement on the Miramar Peninsula, Wellington (on the outskirts of the “Welly-wood” film-making district) is a very special and integral aspect of the film. The overgrown and graffiti emblazoned concrete tunnels are both beautiful and imposing. The rugged concrete gun pits burst out of the lush green hillside with a stunning ocean vista beyond.

Although an awesome place for a film location, it also provided its share of challenges. The famous Wellington gale force winds and driving rain caused delays in filming, lighting equipment to blow over, and debris to blow down the tunnels into the faces of the actors. The remote location has no plumbing or electricity and so equipment like generators and portaloos had to be brought in. New Zealand film crew are hardy creatures.

This film was independently funded on a very small budget and the crew consisted of both very experienced and admired veteran film-makers and enthusiastic film school graduates. The team worked cohesively like a well-oiled story-telling machine and I’m very proud and grateful to every one of them.

I hope you enjoy this film. Thank you for watching.

April Phillips