White Shadow (2014 Sundance capsule)

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<i>White Shadow</i> (2014 Sundance capsule)

Noaz Deshe’s White Shadow is a brutal take on the illegal practice of poaching albinos in East Africa. Gangs hunt down vulnerable targets, including children, for local witch doctors who can handsomely reward the murderous mob. At the heart of our movie’s conflict is a young boy named Alias, who’s sent to the city after the slaughter of his albino father. His struggles are intensified by the movie’s isolating close-ups, almost as if to point out what his potential killers are looking for. The handheld camerawork adds to the uncertainty of Alias’ surroundings and the frenetic pace of his fight to survive. Interestingly, parts of the movie do not show when a person is talking, instead using a voice over on the scene. While ambitious, it feels too whimsical for a gritty and emotional tale like White Shadow.

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