Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Short film review #38

Deafblind

DeafBlind Trailer from Ewan Bailey on Vimeo.
There’s clearly nothing Maxine Peake can’t do (quite what she makes of Hamlet later in the year is a definite treat in store) but her performance in Ewan Bailey’s DeafBlind is something eerily spectacular. She plays Maggie, a deaf blind woman thoroughly isolated by her condition and also, as it turns out, by the attentions of a stalker who has taken up residence in her home completely unbeknownst to her. He seeks to control her existence and there’s a stunningly uneasy sequence as she slowly comes to suspect someone is there and reacts in an unexpected way… Peake is predictably excellent but James Young’s uber-creepy Ben is inscrutably brilliant too.
 



La règle de trois
Louis Garrel (Eva Green’s twin brother in Bertolucci’s The Dreamers) was an unexpected bonus alongside Isabelle Huppert in Les Fausses Confidences and as I don’t think I’ve seen him in anything else, I decided to delve a little into his filmography. Most notable (IMHO) is this moody short, written and directed by him and soon to be turned into a full-length feature. It takes a sideways look at the difficult co-existence between love and friendship as ‘Louis’ spends an amiable day in Paris torn between the attentions of his girlfriend, Golshifteh Farahani’s Marie, and the age-old thrill of carousing with friend Vincent, an intriguing Vincent Macaigne, all the while questioning just what life is for in an inimitably Gallic manner.


Two in a Million

In Marion Pikowsky’s Two in a Million, we discover what happens when a lift containing a young lesbian and a sweary banker is struck by lightning. It’s an age-old idea (never bettered than by the Freaky Friday remake if you ask me) and so it does feel a little derivative here. Kelly Adams and Simon Robson spar amusingly though, and there’s a nice cameo from Adam James.



Waiting for Liz
A rather sweet short that captures some of the enduring magic of the whirlwind that was Elizabeth Taylor’s life. Directed by Philip Walker and written by Claire-Monique Martin who also stars, the film takes place in a dressing room at an emotional moment in her life, where we see the tipping point from one marriage into the next. It is sensitively done, exploring and suggesting possible motivations behind the public persona rather than presenting definitive statements, which results in a gently moving piece of work.
Nancy Sid and Sergio

I have to say I really wasn’t a fan of Craig Pickle’s Nancy Sid and Sergio despite a sterling recommendation from a regular reader. It’s a slightly surreal piece but one whose quirkiness went over my head – the promotional blurb starts “when God and the Devil go on a rock climbing weekend in Wales…” and if that grabs you, then watch on. Otherwise, I think I’d leave it, even with Charlie Cox in the cast.


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