We all have been curious about abandoned houses at the end of the street or the tales of the woman in a white dress lurking around isolated lanes.
Sometimes we have even dared our friends to go to a haunted house at night and touch the supposed 'cursed' door and come back. But mostly these remain childish games and banters.
However, following urban legends and ‘exploring the unexplored’ is a way of life for some and helps them pay their bills.
This same thought brings Arjun (Tarun Teja Mallareddy) to Arti's (Mughda Mallareddy) house on a starry night. Arjun is having a conversation with his friend, Varun, over a video call about how important it is for them to 'get fresh content’ from this house to hit over at least 1 lakh subscribers.
A brief flashback shows us that the house belonged to a girl named Arti.
She was a 23-years-old archaeology student who mysteriously killed herself after returning from a trip to Kanchipuram. The rumors say Arti took away a pair of horses that were never to be separated or bad omen would follow. On a quest to find what happened to Arti and the horses, Arjun enters the house.
Arjun records everything on his phone and with one flashlight. The events that follow after the content-hungry Arjun enters Arti’s place, while his friend Varun virtually supports him, unravel soon without creating unnecessary suspense making Asvins a promising thriller.
This less-than-19-minute short was conceptualised, directed and produced by 'Night Noise Films' started by partners Tarun Teja and Muralidaran in partnership with Nashville Film Institute.
Asvins is a pilot that has the potential to turn into a full-fledged gripping horror-thriller. It will keep you intrigued till the very end if you manage to follow Arjun into the house.
The story-line of Asvins, which has a similar shooting style to the 1999 film The Blair Witch Project, is simple and direct and will make you wonder how much a person is willing to risk for a few seconds of footage. Asvins was made completely during the lockdown with limited resources.
In any thriller, the background music adds to the storyline and Asvins gives you that. The background sounds, designed by Chennai-based music composer Vijay Siddharth, will keep you hooked and, on the edge, throughout.
Talking about the idea behind Asvins, the young filmmaker and screenwriter Tarun Mallareddy, says he didn't want to sit idle during the lockdown. Bored by the content available on Amazon and Netflix, he was pushed towards creating this short with Murali. Filmed entirely at Tarun's house, the natural eeriness of the place pushed him and his small team to carry out the project.
Designing the sound for Asvins was a challenge in itself, says Vijay, who had to work with minimal means available. He also says that since the crew was stuck in their respective houses during the lockdown, it was impossible for anyone to meet and hence the voiceovers were entirely recorded on iPhones, then cleaned up and processed.
Any sane person would ask, what is the need for Varun to go and involve himself in such late-night activities in a haunted house? This is probably what Asvins tries to show: How much people are willing to risk for a few seconds of 'new' content- a problem that seems to plague millennials.
As expected, Arjun does experience his share of the paranormal. His friend from the phone asks him to keep the camera rolling at all costs only till they realise it is too late.
The story of horse possessors
The name of the short is quite peculiar, but before anyone raises apprehensions, you are told what it exactly means.
After being shown a black and white picture of the horses taken away by Arti, according to Hindu mythology, we are told that Asvins are twin vedic brothers and represent a duality of ideas such as dark and light, healing and destruction. However, we are left hanging when a slide reads that whoever finds the horses separated will either kill someone or.....'
WATCH 'ASVINS' HERE: