Up Route (2015)

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“Up Route” is another fun film from director Jordan Wippell, the man who is becoming full of surprises as his career progresses. With a strong screenplay by Brandon Scott and Brett Chapman, “Up Route” is a visit to the Grindhouse sub-genre that pits two men against each other in a road trip.

Jay Antobenedetto is man driving on a trip with his wife’s gardening tools, and a potted plant, and comes across a drifter, as played by Brandon Scott. The two engage in discussion about “Little Shop of Horrors” and soon the tension rises when the driver gets curious about what’s in the drifter’s bag. Director Wippell has only so much time to tell a story and he unfolds a damn good narrative within the five minute mark, unveiling complex characters, and unique themes set against the backdrop of “Little Shop of Horrors.”

What it all means is really left to the imagination until the very end when we find out the significance of the plant and gardening tools. The visual style for “Up Route” is slick with enough dread and foreboding tension to really help deliver the gut punch ending that suggests there’s more to come. Wippell has really been on his A game lately, and “Up Route” is another fine short film from the man whose roster shows an increase in skill and storytelling aptitude.