Saying goodbye is the hardest part. Or is it, really…?
Children go through many firsts in their initial years of life: First word. First day at school. First dentist appointment. And much more.
While some are natural human developments, others require bravery. Especially for a vulnerable child placed in a terrifying situation; one they’re not mature enough to understand.
In The Kiss, young Billy’s been asked by mother Shelley to kiss Godmother Norma: an old woman in her sixties with thick makeup. Who lies cold in her casket. Dead.
As you’d imagine, ‘first kiss of a corpse’ isn’t an accomplishment Billy’s eager to add to his resume.
From the start, the boy finds himself quite hesitant about the whole funeral experience. He’s particularly unable to grasp how friend Sam can eat with a corpse nearby – “festering” just across the room.
As it turns out, Sam’s an expert in the business of death. Able to handle his food under grisly conditions, Sam entertains Billy with graphic descriptions of what will happen to Norma’s body… after all’s been said and done.
And Sam cautions Billy about one horrific thing:
There’s a point nine nine nine nine
nine… nine percent that… they
come back no matter what.
Needless to say, this information doesn’t convince Billy to comply with his mom’s request. So when she returns to his side, Billy’s still fighting what he’s gotta do.
Then Shelley manages to make Billy even more nervous – telling her son certain tall tales that raise the stakes even higher than before!
Riddled with witty fun dialogue, The Kiss is one of those magical scripts that refuses to obey genre rules. It’s a story that’ll align you with Billy from the first few lines – and raise questions along the way:
Will Billy kiss the corpse? What will happen if he fails? And what about that nine nine nine nine nine percent chance of bringing a monstrous horror to life?
Do you want to direct this? The answer should be a dead-sure “yes.” The Kiss is a clear festival favorite. And you don’t have to smooch a corpse to see it through…
Budget: Moderate. Yes, you’ll need a casket and access to a “church”. But most of the rest is easy to accomplish. Almost as easy as kissing… a dead relative?
About the reviewer: Hamish Porter is a writer who, if he was granted one wish, would ask for the skill of being able to write dialogue like Tarantino. Or maybe the ability to teleport. Nah, that’s nothing compared to the former. A lover of philosophy, he’s working on several shorts and a sporting comedy that can only be described as “quintessentially British”. If you want to contact him, he can be emailed: hamishdonaldp “AT” gmail.com. If you’d like to contact him and be subjected to incoherent ramblings, follow him on Twitter @HamishP95.
About the writer: Kosta learned how to draw before he can write. This background in graphic design and illustration comes through in his writing as his work exudes an unmistakable visual style.
His work has placed in the finals of numerous screenplay competitions including the Nicholl’s and Screencraft fellowships as well as the Industry Insider screenwriting competition featuring Sheldon Turner.
Kosta is currently working on another feature and developing a project for television. He lives in perpetual rush hour traffic in Montreal, Canada and can always be reached at kostak “AT” kostak.com
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