White River Tales - An AFI Thesis Film
Small town. Big stories.

Story

What's the Story? 

Set in a small town in 1989, White River Tales is the story of Ned Hope, a struggling young father who's facing eviction with his wife when he gets news that his mother has been in a terrible car accident.

This forces him to return to his hometown to face his own abusive father and dark past.

When he discovers that the reckless driver who hit his mother is an old friend from his criminal youth, and his mother is pronounced dead, an urge for vengeance arises in him.

He must choose between two paths.

Will he continue to be the father, husband, and man he set out to be?

Or is he nothing more than his past mistakes and where he comes from? 

The film explores fate, family, and fatherhood. And it poses the question, must the ghost of our past be the spirit of our future? It's a drama with crime elements and a hint of revenge thriller. It's dramatic realism with a tall tale style, tone, and magic. But ultimately, it's a very human story about the duality of man and the struggle to do good in the face of adversity.

"White River Tales" was conceived as an anthology feature made up of five short films, which all take place in the same small town of White River. This thesis film, featuring Ned Hope, is one of those five shorts. Each short will focus on the themes of life in a small town.

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