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Horror Short “The Dollmaker”

Updated: Jun 12

The Dramatic and Psychological Impact of "The Doll Maker": A Memorable Short Film


"The Doll Maker" is a short film released in 2017 that quickly took the internet by storm, accumulating millions of views. This film tells a captivating and intriguing story, full of dramatic and bizarre elements. Today, we will explore in more depth this cinematographic work that caught so much public attention.

Synopsis and Context

With less than nine minutes in length, this American production, directed by Al Lougher and written by Matias Caruso, manages to convey a dense and emotional narrative, full of elements of drama, psychological horror and fantasy.

Plot Analysis

"The Doll Maker", which can be translated as "The Doll Maker", begins with a couple grieving the loss of their son. The dollmaker, a mysterious character, requests personal items from the deceased boy, such as clothes, toys and a lock of hair. From there, he creates a doll that, for the mother, becomes the image of her son.

Rules and Limitations

The puppeteer establishes clear rules: the doll only "works" within the house where the boy grew up and should not be used for long periods. If these rules are broken, parents may lose their sense of reality and no longer distinguish between the doll and the child.

Development and Tension

The film's direction, as well as the script, is extremely effective. As the puppeteer explains the rules, the camera focuses on the hourglass, symbolizing the passage of time and the parents' potential loss of sanity. In a quick succession of scenes, we see the mother treating the doll as if it were her son, while the father, in disbelief and despair, tries to deal with the situation.

Climax and Revelation

The highlight of the film comes when the father, in a desperate attempt to bring his wife back to reality, takes her out of the house. Only to discover that both his son and his wife have been turned into dolls. This revelation is presented quickly and impactfully, completely changing the public's perception of the story.

Reflections on Grief and Acceptance

"The Doll Maker" addresses deep themes such as grief and the difficulty of acceptance. The mother, unable to overcome the loss of her son, chooses to live in the illusion provided by the doll. The father, in his attempt to save her, ends up succumbing to the same illusion. The film questions how far we are willing to go to avoid facing the pain of loss.

Technical and Creative Aspects

In addition to the script and direction, the production stands out for its soundtrack, which mixes soft fairytale elements with the macabre and dark atmosphere of the narrative. The cinematography is meticulously planned, with framing that intensifies tension and revelations that surprise the audience.


"The Doll Maker" is a short film that, despite its brief duration, leaves a deep mark on the viewer. Its unique approach to grief and acceptance, combined with impeccable technical execution, makes it a memorable work. I strongly recommend that you watch this film and reflect on its messages.

Final comments

And you, what did you think of "The Doll Maker"? Do you consider the film impactful or were you disappointed? Did you already know this production or do you know of other similar shorts? Leave your comments and suggestions!

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