Film FestivalShort Film Reviews 03

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ALSO: 11'09"01 | THE ANIMATRIX

On this page - LLGFF SHORTS: BANANA SPLIT | BREAKFAST? | CANADA: SPERM BANK OF AMERICA |
I LOVE LONDON | L.T.R. | LAST SUPPER | LE LAIT NESTLE |
ONE FINE MORNING | THE VARIETIES OF RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE

Back to the SHADOWS FILM FEST page last update 31.Jul.03

back to the top LLGFF SHORT FILMS
Selected short films shown at the British Film Institute's 17th London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival 2-16 April 2003.
Any chance to see short films on a big screen should be siezed upon!
REVIEWS BY RICH CLINE
link and schenke BREAKFAST? [Fruhstuck?]
dir-scr
Alexander Pfeuffer; with Tobias Schenke, Nico Link, Anna Thalbach 02/Ger 14m 4 out of 5 stars
Genuinely charming and sweet, this well-filmed short centres on two boys who are obviously headed for romance but take a while to get there. Boris (Link) is a nice guy with a new flat on his own. He's trying to get it together with Till (Schenke), who keeps inviting his flatmate (Thalbach) along on dates, then making sure he's home for breakfast. This is mostly because Till is a sex fiend, looking for quickie experiences with any random guy, which is something Boris can't stand. And actually, underneath it all, Till is a romantic as well, but it takes a while for him to admit it to even himself. The script, direction and acting are all excellent, and it nicely captures the awkward balance between teasing lust and wanting something more meaningful. 24.Mar.03 llgff
I LOVE LONDON
dir-scr
Jules Nurrish; with Matthew Dunning, Suzanne Begley, Jonathan Keane, Steven Henry 02/UK 7m 2 out of 5 stars
This is a kind of awkward short that combines cruising in a disco with video personals as well as magazine dating classifieds, about four people looking for love. They're defined by their stereotypes: the boyish 'camp lad', the girly 'true femme', the nautical 'sailor boy' and the hunky 'buff n tuff'. It's not particularly clever or well-made, and it's too bone-dry to be very funny, but there are a few astute and ironic/cynical observations. It feels like it has no point at all, and indeed the pointlessness of it all is the whole idea! 24.Mar.03 llgff
the dullest orgy ever LAST SUPPER [Abendmahl]
dir
Angela C Popp; scr Bernhard P Beutler; with Klaus Pfefferkorn, Stefan Becker, Markus Eckert, Eric Krapf, Detlef Spielberg 02/Ger 18m 1 out of 5 stars
Shot like in that cheap and cheesy soap opera style, this badly acted story centres on a gay couple that's so unlikely you never believe it for a second. One is a nerdy goofball who can't do anything right; the other is a sexy partier. These kinds of couples only ever exist in lame films like this, in which the Nerd discovers that the Party Boy has been cheating, so cooks a farewell dinner for him that has a really revolting twist to it. The characters are so stereotypical and stupid that you don't care at all; they don't belong together in the first place! It's also ludicrously timid, trying to be sexy but having everyone keep their clothes on, even in a supposed orgy scene. Yeah right. Pathetic and pretty yucky too. 24.Mar.03 llgff
L.T.R.
dir-scr
Philip Bartell; with ACole Williams, Weston Mueller, Aimee Garcia, Michael Azria, Jonathan Knight 02/US 16m 4 out of 5 stars
This hysterically funny short is like a mini-romantic epic, filmed as a documentary about how people are blinded by love when in the early stages of a relationship. But of course the young couple at the centre don't know this is the idea. Michael and Riley are only 20 and 21 and they've only known each other for two weeks when they confess that they've finally found their partner for life. The film follows them through a couple weeks of domestic bliss, confronting differences, compromise, tension with friends and eventually a separation. Then one of them has a fling with the cameraman! It's so well observed and so hilariously filmed that it completely wins you over. 24.Mar.03 llgff
cyril x LE LAIT NESTLE
dir
Herve Joseph Lebrun; with Cyril X 02/Fr 7m 2 out of 5 stars
The simple thesis of this film is to compare a tube of Nestle sweetened condensed milk with a certain bodily fluid, and so we have a guy squeezing the tube, touching the sticky goo, tasting it, smearing it all over his face ... and then on his bare bum. It's completely ridiculous, grainy saturated imagery accompanied only by music and noise. And somehow it manages to actually eroticise a tube of milk! Yuck! 24.Mar.03 llgff
ONE FINE MORNING
dir-scr
Scott Boswell; with Kevin Mertz, Jonathan Timmerman, Nancy Willoughby, Mary McGloin, Bob Brindley, Tom Llewellyn 02/US 16m 3 out of 5 stars
This sweet and funny short centres on a teen named Adam (played by the obviously older Mertz) on his first day back at school after the summer break. He has spent the whole holiday obsessing about his friend Matt (Timmerman) and wondering if he got the hint he dropped heavily at the end of the school year. He's frustrated by his mother, annoyed with his friends, and just wanting to know what Matt thinks. Setin the late 80s, the film has a hilarious Cure vibe (Adam is obsessed with Robert Smith and even writes a very Cure-like love song, which we hear over and over!). It's very corny and perhaps a little too silly in its use of special effects to tell us what Adam is thinking, but it's such a cute examination of a lovestruck teen that we don't really mind. 24.Mar.03 llgff
back to the top LLGFF: THREE BY GRAHAM HOLLINGS
These shorts were made by the prolific Canadian filmmaker Graham Hollings. Two of them were shown at the British Film Institute's 17th London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival 2-16 April 2003.
REVIEWS BY RICH CLINE
canada: sperm bank of satan CANADA: SPERM BANK OF SATAN
dir-scr
Graham Hollings; with Scott Beveridge, Mike EB, Alex McClelland, Joel Gibb, Luis Jacob 02/Canada 12m 4 out of 5 stars
This viciously funny, delightfully politically incorrect short springs from a comment made by a right wing religious American about the depraved morality of Canadians (because the Canadian supreme court extended legal rights to same-sex couples). And filmmaker Hollings takes this idea and runs with it so brilliantly that it takes the breath away as it follows a good ole boy Yank driving his pickup across the border at Niagara Falls for a day of lusty cruising and debauchery. Basically, it's the definition of the word "satan" that's the joke here, with jabs at all things Canadian along the way (maple syrup anyone?). Sharp, hilarious and deeply rude. It also has a fantastic musical score that includes Jimi Hendrix's "Star Spangled Banner" and Celine Dion's "God Bless America". 15.Apr.03 llgff
THE VARIETIES OF RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE
dir-scr
Graham Hollings; with Andrew Montague Cecil, Mike EB 02/Canada 5m 4 out of 5 stars
This surreal short is from the perspective of a young man standing in front of a church with his Bible in hand, distracted byt he sight of another guy looking at him ... and letting his mind wander. To the strains of "Ave Maria" we see all imagery from nature, religious icons ... and then sexual tension in a very clever, witty way. And without ever using dialog, the film manages to mix pathos with the longing, never making fun of the forbidden desire, shame or frustration. 15.Apr.03 llgff
banana split BANANA SPLIT
dir-scr
Graham Hollings; with Luis Jacob, Mike EB 02/Canada 3m 2 out of 5 stars
A bit of fluff this time, as a guy sitting in the park eating ice cream lets his mind wander all over the body of another guy sleeping in the sun. In his fantasy he makes the other man into a giant banana split, complete with bananas and whipped cream, all accompanied by a Duke Ellington jazz score. A cute, brief look at desire. 15.Apr.03 llgff
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ALSO: 11'09"01 | THE ANIMATRIX

2003 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall


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