SPLINTERS is a drama about a mother and son who cope with a tragic loss in their own ways. Anna and her son, Bo, live in a small town in the Midwest isolated from each other and the rest of the world. Since the passing of Anna’s husband, the two struggle to communicate. Her worries about Bo only push him further away as his grief takes him on a journey looking for answers that may or may not exist.As Bo notices a budding friendship between his mother and his teacher David, he enlists the help of David’s daughter to investigate a story his father told him involving buried money at a local sawmill where his father worked. The family’s unravelling ultimately leads them to a place of understanding. The characters learn to forgive each other because they realize they are all that they have left. A splinter is a broken piece from something larger. All of the characters in this story are splinters.  They are the remaining pieces of a broken family.SNAPSHOT REVIEW

This film clocks in and just over an hour, yet moves at a snails pace, letting viewers be fully immersed in the simple story line based around a circle of friends in small town USA. The character development is so precise in that each individual resembles the mannerisms of the others. Long, slow drawls, with not much in the way of spark or excitement.

While Bo’s mother works the night shift at a local hotel, Bo is left alone to deal with the sorrows of losing his father. This causes distractions and a dislike for school, compounded even further when he thinks his recently separated teacher might have an attraction for his mother. One day Bo decides to seek out the buried money, and eventually confronts his father’s boss, who denies burying anything.

Things eventually come to a low point between mother and son, before they realize they are both grieving simultaneously, yet in their own unique ways. This is indie film at it’s finest. Nothing spectacular happens, yet it still gives off feel-good vibes.

Available from Outsider Pictures

SPLINTERS is the latest micro budget independent film to be supported by Outsider Pictures, as part of its new strategy to bring first time independent directors voices to the screen. The Outsider deal for each micro budget film is the same – all costs are approved upfront by the Director/Producer and all profits are split 50:50. Outsider is actively looking for new micro budget films to support. Outsider’s next micro budget release will be Conor Mcbride’s Saturday Night Inside Out. Previously, Outsider released TEJANO, by David Blue Garcia, who went on to direct the reboot of  Texas Chainsaw Massacre for Legendary Pictures, which was then sold to Netflix.


About a month out from production, I arrived back in my hometown in Southern Indiana with an incredibly naive “To Do List.” For three years, I worked on my script and wondered if I would ever actually undertake making the film. I enjoy being a cinematographer which allows me to jump from project to project participating mainly just during filming. For Splinters, I wanted to manage the risk that comes with directing and make the film in as small a way as possible which required the very tight knit, essential crew to wear multiple hats. For example, one of our producers, Adam Maffei, was also our first assistant director. I also decided to act as my own cinematographer. In order to avoid distractions from performances, I decided to use entirely natural and available light and never move the camera. Embracing the limitations made the film and the making of it unique.In the weeks leading up to the shoot, Mark Totte (producer) and I worked on the ever-growing list of things to prepare for our nine day shooting schedule. There didn’t seem to be enough hours in the day. In the end, I realized if I could just capture what I put on the page, things wouldn’t be a total disaster. I spent years working on the script telling a story loosely based on my best friend’s experience of losing his father. I was able to relate to the idea of broken families by weaving in details from my own childhood dealing with my parents’ divorce.

About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats.