The film is effectively a horror short story with the sort of twist horror short stories tend to have. Although A Light Before the Dark’s twist is a tad predictable, it is at least a competently made example of this type of story, with effective use of sound (or lack thereof) as well as strong camerawork, including some immersive point of view shots that help us to emphasise with Celeste’s distress.
Although, in his director’s statement Arepo writes that his motives are to celebrate stillness in a world so caught up with movement, this short also seems to comment on the loss of the artist within their work. It is significant that as soon as each man picks up the camera, they are thrust into scenes that are dominated by their deathly lack of movement. A stationary mannequin, collected butterflies and bearded statues create a surprisingly lifeless setting.
An interesting and gorgeously shot short film, Cyclamen explores what director Davide Canali describes as, “the interaction between the external world, in which [man] moves
and relates, and the inner world made of pains, desires and resilience.”