Film FestivalFilm Festival Reviews ’02

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PLUS: BAVO DEFURNE | 11'09"01 | SHORTS 2003


Back to the SHADOWS FILM FEST page | last update 17.Apr.02

back to the top LLGFF SHORT FILMS
Selected short films shown at the British Film Institute's 16th London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival 3-17 April 2002.
Any chance to see short films on a big screen should be siezed upon!
the dream boy BOYCHICK
Glenn Gaylord • with Ben Lang, Andrea LaBella, Lindsay Girardot, Greg Stiff, Nic Arnzen • 01/US 12m 4 out of 5 stars
Absolutely hilarious spoof short playing off the Jewish-American subculture (the name Boychick is a play on a Yiddish term). It's about a burgeoning teen (Lang) who lives a whole fantasy life in his head, in which he's guided by a Britney-like pop idol (Girardot) to get the cute boy (Stiff) in school. Meanwhile his mother (LaBella) seems to have no limit in her ability to embarrass him. This is colourful and energetic, full of wicked and hilarious spoof scenes and full-on musical numbers with brilliant choreography. And it's also very insightful, catching Boychick's angst authentically, without ever making fun of him, and acknowledging the fact that most of us just cope with these things without becoming teen sex fiends! 13.Apr.02 llgff
Kieran Galvin • with Cameron Ford, Josh Roberts • 00/Australia 12m 2Ω out of 5 stars
This disturbing Aussie short centres on two teen boys hanging out together - all internal yearing and outward bravado, talking mostly nonsense even though they are both thinking very serious things. The imagery is stunning, vivid cinematography full of bright skies and water. Tonally, the film shifts abduptly from goofing around in a pool to a confrontation in an abandoned shack. A bit overdramatic and indulgent - but also haunting. 13.Apr.02 llgffback to the top
Roy Mitchell • with Roy Mitchell • 01/Can 5m 3Ω out of 5 stars
"A story based on truth and metaphor" - this short tells about a relationship breakdown from the point of view of Mitchell, who finally asked his Brazilian boyfriend to leave. After outlining why the relationship was doomed from the start (he only wanted a goodlooking man on his arm!), Mitchell then uses a metaphor of taking his pet fish out of the aquarium and setting it free in a local lake, accompanied to Michael Jackson's "Ben" - hilarious! 13.Apr.02 llgff
Bryan McHenry • with Nick Lewis, Gerardo Cardenas • 00/US 15m 2Ω out of 5 stars
A biographical short about two Midwestern teen boys who draw comic books together, go to movies, talk about life and so on. What they don't talk about is sex, and one of them is struggling hugely with both his sexuality and his attraction to his friend. When he finally opens up, it doesn't go remotely as he thought it would. It's quite touching and strong, capturing a real sense of teen yearning. Yet the filmmaking style is alienating - broken into brief blackout scenes accompanied by cheesy, annoying music. 13.Apr.02 llgffback to the top
two boys get serious... PASSING RESEMBLANCES
Daniel Wascou • with Serge Kirasanov, Michael Blackman, Megan Henning, Ashley McNulty • 01/US 16m 3Ω out of 5 stars
The dynamics between four teens are sensitively and realistically examined in this nicely made short. There are two guys and two girls, and the central relationship is between the two best friends--guys who are very much attracted to each otherm but it's such a taboo that they can hardly bring themselves to discuss it. Eventually they do, and the result is clever subtle and very honest. As one says, "I wish it was easy." 13.Apr.02 llgff
time for teletubbies PORNO-TUBBIES
Ian Jarvis • with Tinky-winky, Dipsy, LaLa, Po • 01/Can 6m 2 out of 5 stars
Taking actual Teletubbies footage and adding a new voice-over and subtitles, the filmmaker plays on rumours of Tinky-Winky's sexuality. Yes, these obnoxious little creatures decide the Purple One is gay, and start taunting him as he discos to Madonna. His efforts to educate them in tolerance leads to a nasty gay bashing incident, but pretty soon they get the idea, channelling porn into their TV screens and going rather mad with the idea. Pretty cheap laughs, but rather inventive in a sick sort of way. 16.Apr.02 llgff
lusting after roberto SODA POP
Patrick McGuinn • with John Ort, Graciano Nunez, Melanie Wehrmacher, Hadley Tomicki, Eric Millegan • 01/US 7m 2Ω out of 5 stars
Funny and edgy at the same time, this rather nostalgic short looks at a summer when a gorgeous Spanish exchange student comes to town, only he stays with the narrator's obnoxious neighbours instead of him. As he lusts quietly, he still manages to have a good summer ... in a crowd instead of alone with Roberto! And they drink lots of soda pop. The film is a bit mannered and arty, it looks like a vintage 1960s home movie. 13.Apr.02 llgffback to the top
Ian Iqbal Rashid • with Stuart Laing, Nitin Ganatra • 01/UK 9m 4 out of 5 stars
Surprisingly well-produced dramatic short about an Indian bridegroom (Ganatra) who wakes up in the arms of his best man (Laing) on the morning after the stag night. As they get ready for the wedding ceremony, they talk about their 15 years of friendship and whether this was a logical next step or a drunken mistake ... and whether the wedding should go on. It's a bit glib, but the characters are startlingly well-developed for such a short film, it avoids cliches at every turn, and it's actually quite thought-provoking and touching in the end. 10.Mar.02 llgff
feeling unappreciated SUNDAY MORNING
Robert Farrar • with Matthew Waite, Alex McSweeney • 01/UK 15m 3Ω out of 5 stars
The brightly-lit sets and a camp, comic tone hint at something much more serious going on in this entertaining and seemingly silly British short about two guys sharing a house on a Sunday--a prissy drama queen trying to please the rugged brute who just won't have any of it. Little battles ensue--rudeness, snappy retorts and collisions both hilariously funny and deeply worrying. It's not just a parody of the polar extremes of gay men, it's also a sharp satire of old-school British marriage. Then just when you start feeling ill, there's a brilliant twist in the tale. 16.Apr.02 llgff
tom and clay TOM CLAY JESUS
Hoang A Duong • with Scott Saffer, David Ojalvo, Charles Kaiser • 01/US 17m 4 out of 5 stars
This surprisingly meaningful short looks at cruising and one-night stands in three chapters. First there's "Tom", in which Tom (Saffer) brings Clay (Ojalvo) home for the night, then bumps into him by accident a few days later, having never called him as promised. A month later we see him pick up a new guy. In "Clay" we follow the same events from Clay's perspective, only this time we see him grow a beard and become the new guy, "Jesus", who Tom doesn't recognise. It's very well-filmed, using clever repetitive images to show the emptiness of seeking companionship in this way. A bit overtly cautionary and sad, but nicely done. 13.Apr.02 llgff
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PLUS: BAVO DEFURNE | 11'09"01 | SHORTS 2003

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© 2002 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall