"The Night Owl" is a story of miscommunication and conflict between two neighbors living in New York City. As a filmmaker, I'm drawn in by the contrast between the way modern technology has us constantly communicating, yet in some ways growing increasingly out of touch with one another. This often sets the background for misunderstandings, fear, conflict and at times violence. It has become increasingly important to me to analyze this on a human level, which brings us face to face.
Setting the film in a contemporary urban environment only further magnifies and complicates the narrative. In the middle of the twentieth century there was a large social migration out of city centers into the more homogenous suburbs; many refer to this as "white flight." In the past decade there has been a shift back into previously less desirable urban areas by youthful and often times more privileged individuals. Gentrification has become a common term used not just in large cities like New York but also in cities across the country experiencing a similar influx.
"The Night Owl's" main character Aaron is one such privileged youth. He lives in a small building that was, and to some degree still is, occupied by native working class New Yorkers. After a night out with friends he is awoken by a knock on his door from the downstairs neighbor Leonard, who believes a loud banging is coming from Aaron's apartment. Aaron and Leonard go through a series of increasingly tense interactions leading to a violent and abstract resolution.