Two Rivers

Written by David Strege


My heart goes out to the story in this great Wisconsin short film by director Melonie Gartner.

Now before I go into the film I need to get off my chest on why this film speaks to me.  Partly stemming to the abuse in my own childhood but I also have a freind I’m not namng  names but had level one Schizophrenia and because of his abusive mature and many instances where he should have gone to jail for the beatings he gave the females in his relationships including his current wife which now I don’t hear from which is kind of sad.  She lost custody of her first child due to their battles…


Now a group of workers from a two rivers factory as the town is small and seems to only have just this factory for jobs areally gossiping after an afternoon on the job when Emma appears walking home from work.

Tom the security guard mentions how Emma used to be the light hearted sweet personality before she’d started living with her on again off again boyfriend Dirke played by Coven Director Mark Borchardt Known for his roles in Jet Li’s The One and and having been featured in a documentary called American Movie from 2004.


As the feature evolves it’s obvious that Emma has to walk along way to get to and from work.  Emma arrives home with her groceries and Derek is sitting at the kitchen table smoking heavily and drinking vodka as he literally tells her he’d walked in and quit his job.

Way I gathered he might have been in a possible war at some point but Derke, continued to get violently and visibly mad at Emma.  He wasn’t happy with her chicken she brought home to make.


Claimed nobody understanda and after she talked back got up and physically slapped her leaving bruises.  Derke went into the back room and demanded she bring him a beer and she went in, the door closed and you hear yelling and noises then it’s morning….


Emma walk out and appeared like she was gathering up her things to leave.  Threw some sunglasses on to cover her bruises to walk along way with a rolling suitcase to the end of a pier around a lighthouse and through the suit case in the lake as it floats we see blood slowly seep into the drifting water in a cool effect and left to wonder did she?

I thoroughly enjoyed meetin Melonie at the Milwaukee Twisted Dreams Festival as this short film is her first endevor and achievement.  I give this short a 4 out of 5 Star rating and think it was really under recognized for its subtle under linings. I think people will enjoy her film as time goes on and recommend for everyone to try to give her a nod she deserves at least a shot to be looked at as shes new to the game. Great job Melonie

To me the real horror is how people can be to each other behind closed doors and often goes without justice…

Starring Mark Brchard somt has Dirke, Melonie Gartner as Emma, Tom Huber as Security Officer Tom, Charles Allger as Chuck (factory worker), JerriLynn Burkart as Jerri (factory worker), Marygrace Ponzio as Marygrace (factory worker).


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