Dual Action short film review


Directed by: Usher Morgan

Written by: Usher Morgan

Starring: Joe Trombino, Joel Bernard, Elyse Price, Skye Stracke

Film Review by: Jason Knight

Movie Poster for Dual Action

What do people go through when they are about to die? What goes through their minds? Does their entire life flash before their eyes? Do they see things that others do not? Usher Morgan's short comedy drama Dual Action explores this.

Mercer (Trombino) is a criminal who has got himself into a rather nasty situation. He is being pursued by the police and is critically wounded by a gunshot. He hides inside a building and the police lose sight of him. As he sits there bleeding, armed with a pistol and not knowing what to do, out of nowhere two mysterious people appear. They are a man dressed entirely in white (Bernard) and a pale faced woman dressed entirely in black (Price), like she is attending a funeral. The two of them are Mercer's hallucinations and appear to want to make him reflect on his no-good life and understand his errors before he passes away.

The script starts with reality and moves on to fantasy and right from the beginning the film gets the audience's attention. They are introduced to outlaw Mercer and will want to know more about him. And by the end of the story, they will find out about his life, a life-changing tragedy he was responsible for and how he views himself, creating effective character development. The dialogue is clever, humorous and dramatic and the characters are interesting and engaging.

Protagonist Trombino delivers a dynamic performance. He shows signs of pain and agony as his character is suffering from a gunshot wound and is very convincing when he becomes confused, surprised, angry and regretful. Bernard and Price are very entertaining as two rather laidback 'imaginary' individuals, who do not appear to be taking the situation very seriously.

Morgan has done an impressive job with the direction and lighting and uses superimposition and fast cutting editing techniques to great effect. And the use of Bruce Connole's Dead in the Water fits perfectly with the tone of the film and its subject matter.

Generally Dual Action deserves a lot of praise and recognition. It is a film that offers an entertaining ride that is filled with good humour, suspense and drama.