Experiencing Interruptions?

Stay Inside

A young couple struggle with the trials and tribulations of isolating during the beginning stages of an undead pandemic.

  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
  • Zoe Fishpool
    Key Cast
  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
    Key Cast
    "Jacob, Undead"
  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
    Director of Photography
  • Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt
  • Ryan Gordon
  • Project Type:
    Short, Student
  • Genres:
    Romance, Drama, Thriller
  • Runtime:
    9 minutes 57 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    January 27, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    0 AUD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Queensland University of Technology
  • QUT Shorties X
    April 2, 2022
    World Premier
    Best Cinematography, Best Narrative, Best Director
  • Light Up Film Festival
    May 19, 2022
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt

Lachlan Anderson-Schmidt is a director, writer and cinematographer. He was born in 2002 in Tamworth, New South Wales, and was raised on the Gold Coast, Queensland. He started studying a film degree at QUT in 2021.

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Director Statement

My films usually centre around a character’s search for identity through emotional journeys in fantasy worlds. However, “Stay Inside” is a shift from my usual stories. Instead of focusing on the search for identity, it’s story is centred around the cautionary tale about the over importance on a misunderstood identity. “Stay Inside” is an exaggerated allegory of the current response to the omicron variant, but it also looks at themes of toxic masculinity, the unrealistic expectations of love and suicide.

During high school, I had an all-male group of friends who would show sexist, repressive and aggressive behaviour throughout my last years at school. Throughout my youth I had suffered from severe anxiety disorder. So, the fear of not fitting in highlighted a need to indulge in this behaviour, ultimately starting to hate the person I was becoming and my so called “friends” around me. After graduating, finishing my first year of university and falling in love, I became reflective of the person I once was and how revolting my behaviour was. I believed other people in my old friendship group suffered in silence just as much as me. I came to this conclusion after a friend of a friend took his life unexpectedly. After I was stuck in lockdown for seven days, I was only armed with the camera, lights and sound equipment I had at my disposal and began creating this film.

I had constraints filming and adapted it to the film. While in lockdown there was no way I could get any physical actors, so I had to use lights, sound, camera movement and shadows to convey their presence. This adds a level of immersion as it is up to the imagination the audience to create the characters or see themselves as the characters living through this moment together. Whether they see their loved ones or their future selves in the role, they can find a personal connection with the film in removing the actors and only having voice over. It's an innovative technique that I wanted to experiment with and explore how emotions can be conveyed without any actors present on screen.

I made the aspect ratio 1.33 with curved edges to create an isolating feeling, reflective of that being in lockdown and 2.39 to create sense of change and transition in the characters lives. Most of the lighting is dark, with the night scenes reducing in light as the film progresses and the day scenes having shadows, conveying the tragic conclusion of the film. Music is played throughout the entirety of the film except for the suicide scene, in order to pay respect and show the raw reality of the act. The colour pallet of the film varies with the darker scenes illuminating orange, yellow and black to create ambiguity and other scenes having blue and yellow, separating the feeling of melancholy and happiness. Showing that Despite being alone, they are alone together. The salt lamp is a constant metaphor throughout the film as both protagonist begin to fall in a constant chaos and isolate from each other in the apartment. Salt lamps represent a boost in mood and improved sleep. So as these habits diminish, the lamp fades more and more into the darkness.

I want this film to be a personal journey for the audience and their interpretation. It’s a personal story for me, despite me being a young filmmaker with limited life experience. But its an important message to tell an audience, while also entertaining them with art to provoke a personal reflection within themselves.