Film FestivalFilm Festival Reviews 02

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

On this page - LLGFF SHORTS: CHICKEN | DROWNING LESSONS | FAMILY OUTING |
THE FAVOR | FINAL EXAMS | JEFFREY'S HOLLYWOOD SCREEN TRICK | LOVE'S RESURRECTED |
LUCKY BUGGER | PEE WEE'S SODOMY HOUSE | RED IN THE FACE

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!
REVIEWS BY RICH CLINE
CHICKEN
dir
Barry Dignam withDarren Healy, Niall O'Shea 02/Ireland 3m 4 out of 5 stars
A beautifully-filmed Irish short with stunning coastal scenery as two teen boys taunt each other with their machismo, barely concealing the emotional bond between them. Terrific cinematography and acting make it feel like a micro-epic of boyish behaviour - playing with knives, throwing rocks, drinking cider - and subliminal desire. 13.Apr.02 llgff
brother and sister clash
DROWNING LESSONS
dir
Gregory Kennedy with Gregory Kennedy, Edouardo Ballerini, Barbara Sullivan 01/US 19m 4 out of 5 stars
Here's another fully-formed story told in under 20 minutes. It's about a brother and sister, Jeremy and Barbara (Kennedy and Sullivan), sharing a flat and, even as adults, playing on childhood jealousies and fears. When they meet the new neighbour (Ballerini), both are instantly attracted to him, and a sort of battle of wits ensues. At the centre is Jeremy's fear of water, and swimming is nicely used as a metaphor for his inability to get on with his life, stand up against Barbara and go for what he wants in life. The film is gorgeously shot and edited, with excellent performances and a terrific nervous tone that draws us in. And the drama comes to life wonderfully--strong, moving stuff. 16.Apr.02 llgff
FAMILY OUTING
dir
Ben McCormack with Michael Churvin, Leo Bradley, Rhett Mansel 00/Australia 5m 3 out of 5 stars
This simple black and white short is like watching an urban myth - in which a young man takes his first trip to a gay sauna and is so terrified of everything that he slinks into a tiny cubicle to hide, then discovers the glory hole. Then he gets a very big surprise. When the title "a true story" appeared at the end, the audience howled and applauded. 13.Apr.02 llgff
THE FAVOR
dir
Ernesto M Foronda with Noah Fleiss, Jared Hillman, Tirlok Malik, Caroline Kava, Jamieson Stern 01/US 5m 3 out of 5 stars
Somewhat silly short about two teen boys on the streets of the city, daring each other to buy a porn mag at a newsstand. The one who does it has to endure not only his own deep-rooted embarrasment, but further humiliation when the seller catches him and is horribly open-minded, drawing a crowd in his efforts to put the boy at ease! Funny and warm, touching a nerve and featuring a nice punchline at the end. 13.Apr.02 llgff
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FINAL EXAMS
dir
Pascal Vincent with Jean-Baptiste Penigault, Florence Loiret, Julie Durand, Nicolas Ullmann, Betty Teboulle, Steve Tran, Hong-Mai Thomas 01/France 18m 4 out of 5 stars
Another mini-feature, with a complete story in only 18 minutes. It's about four teens waiting for their exam results. Wein (Steve) is struggling with his Asian background, wishing he was just a normal guy. Cedric (Penigault) is hiding his sexuality from his mother (Teboulle), who knows more than she lets on. And Gaelle and Chloe (Loiret and Durand) are trying to forget about their exams by acting silly, going swimming and gossiping about everyone. This is proper filmmaking - with a decent budget. It looks great, the actors are excellent and it's both hilairous and surprisingly touching. 13.Apr.02 llgff
jeffrey leaves the club in shock
JEFFREY'S HOLLYWOOD SCREEN TRICK
dir
Todd Browning 01/US 11m 2 out of 5 stars
Hilarious animated short using stop motion to tell a story of a night out at the disco for poor needy Jeffrey (played by a blond GI Joe), who falls for a very well -endowed stripper (a Billy doll) and then somehow invites him home. There are some telling moments here, as Jeffrey stumbles and hesitates and gushes with nonsense in his efforts to find intimacy and cope with his overpowering lust. The finale is a bit outrageous--both strange and horrific. But it made me laugh! 10.Mar.02 llgff
moline's torch song
LOVE'S RESURRECTED
dir
Jeffrey Moline with Che Johnson, Jeffrey Moline, Swan the Storyteller, Tom Bush 01/US 10m 3 out of 5 stars
Jazzy black and white short with Moline's Simply Red-like vocals underscoring a story of love lost and then found again as Jo (Moline), a bald white singer, meets his old flame Mac (Johnson), who's bald, black and now married. Their reunion is a '40s-style illicit romance--They just can't resist each other! Camp, steamy and very stylised. The music's a bit cloying, but it looks great. 16.Apr.02 llgff
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a day on the beach LUCKY BUGGER
dir
Matthew Fox with Daryl Byford, Neil Copplestone, Vinnie Price, Pauline Ashworth, Brian Kirby 01/UK 3m 3 out of 5 stars
Cute and funny mini-drama about a boy on a day at the beach who stumbles through the dunes and spies on two men cuddling in private, then shares their secret. The black and white footage evokes Fellini/Bergman, with a kind of timeless European design to the whole thing, only broken with one brief colour shot. Nice. 12.Mar.02 llgff
what's the magic word
PEE WEE'S SODOMY HOUSE
dir
Christopher Westfall 01/US 8m 2 out of 5 stars
A lazy slob gets a package containing a model of Pee-wee's Playhouse, which proceeds to come to life using the twisted lonely thoughts in his brain. The animation is crude, but it gets the show's tone exactly right with a dead-on parody of the characters and set. Then it shifts into cheap jokes; Pee-wee and pals descend into porn, acting out the day's "magic word" in the most obvious, rude, stupid way. Not terribly clever then, after all. 16.Apr.02 llgff
wall goes stalking
RED IN THE FACE
dir
Stev'nn Hall with David Wall, Chris Brohman 00/Can 6m 3 out of 5 stars
Mixing colour and black and white, this looks like found footage, random scenes clipped together to tell a story about a loner (Wall) who stalks a businessman (Brohman), then kidnaps and tortures him. It's very violent in tone, and more than a little disturbing, especially as he blames TV (mostly M*A*S*H and for his violent tendencies. Despite the grisliness, this is a startlingly astute little film. 16.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


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