A Young Sisterhood
Though Em is the leading character of the film, D’Alessandro Hatt has crafted the narration to be told from the perspective of her new friends, a tool which the audience admired. Beginning as a seemingly classic mini-teen-drama, consisting of sleepovers, book clubs and struts down the school hallway, the film shortly twists into a fantasy mask for the family issues occuring in Em’s life. Her new-found friends reveal the bravery within Em and the driver for her independent characteristics. Brave Little Army proudly displays the gravitas of placing yourself in other’s shoes. Em becomes a symbol for personalised freedom and self-expression.
Brave Little Army screened amidst seven other powerful short films. With an intimate audience and films with heavy, albeit important, feminist messages, Brave Little Army provided a somewhat comic relief. All films in the “Coming of Age” category addressed significant loss, women’s roles in the home (across the world) and patriarchal dominance. D’Alessandro Hatt’s direction employed the joy of friendship to not only re-divert elements of pain in Em’s life but to illustrate the importance of sisterhood from a young age.
All films demonstrated a diversity in the strength of women, even in moments of defeat. D’Alessandro Hatt displayed this beautifully by the characterisation of Em’s mother, signifying the necessity of standing up for oneself in situations of weakness. Brave Little Army reflected the same message which was present in all of the BFFW short films; women are still bravely fighting elements of oppression, feminism is active across the globe, and the conversation must begin when one is coming of age.
Brave Little Army is part one of a trilogy of short films to come. Follow Michelle D’Alessandro Hatt on Instagram @michelledhatt or follow @blacklabfilmco for updates. You can also follow Jessica Philbrick on Instragram and Facebook @jphilbrickartist or check out her website j-philbrickartist.com.