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Film / Skin (2018 Short)

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Skin is a 2018 short film (20 minutes) directed by Guy Nattiv.

Not to be confused with a 2008 feature film called Skin, or with a completely different 2018 feature film called Skin that was, believe it or not, also about skinheads and also directed by Guy Nattiv. (That one's a Biopic starring Jamie Bell.)

This particular film is about a bunch of rednecks. At first glance, they seem like the garden-variety stereotype of country hicks—mullets, lots of tattoos, driving pickup trucks, target shooting at tin cans. The film centers on one particular family. Thirty-ish Jeffrey Hall, the patriarch, seems to be a loving husband to his wife Christa and an attentive father to his son Troy, who is about ten.

However, a close viewing eventually reveals that Jeffrey and his fellow rednecks have SS tattoos and Nazi swastika tattoos. They are, in fact, white supremacists. Jeffrey tells Troy a racist parable about how to look at a snake's skin to see if it is poisonous. One evening, an entirely harmless interaction between Troy and a black man named Jaydee at the grocery store leads to Jeffrey and his racist goon buddies delivering a brutal beating to Jaydee. Jeffrey and the goons zoom off howling in triumph, but karma soon finds Jeffrey.

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Jaime Ray Newman was a producer of the short.


Tropes:

  • Asshole Victim: Come on. If you honestly sympathize with what happens to Jeffrey, doesn’t say a lot of good things about you, does it?
  • Blade-of-Grass Cut: A close-up of tall grass waving in the sun leads into the scene where Jeffrey and his fellow skinheads go rifle shooting, Troy in tow.
  • Chekhov's Skill: The target practice outing to the lake shows that Troy, thanks to his father, is proficient in using a rifle. In the end, he shoots and kills his father with a rifle.
  • Coincidental Broadcast: A news report isn't about the weather or the local sports scores, nope, it's about how Jeffrey Hall has been missing for 10 days after his kidnapping.
  • Color Me Black: Played for drama. Jaydee's friends kidnap Jeffrey—but no, they don't kill him. Instead they tattoo every inch of his skin black.
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  • Feet-First Introduction: We first seen Troy's feet as they're dangling off a chair. Tufts of hair falling around his feet reveal that he's getting a haircut, from his father as it turns out.
  • Knuckle Tattoos: Jeffrey and his fellow goons have knuckle tattoos, and although the camera never shows quite what they are, they help complete the "white trash" look.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Jeffrey, a racist goon who beat up an innocent black man, gets shot and killed by his own son after his skin is dyed Color Me Black.
  • Lower-Class Lout: The murderous racist redneck yahoos commonly referred to as Skinheads, although Jeffrey and his buddies technically aren't skinheads as they don't have the stereotypical shaved heads.
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