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Field Day short film review


Directed by: David Bradburn

Written by: John McCombs, Maayan Atias-Golbus

Starring: Jonah Saesan, Chris Wayne, Sabeen Sadiq, John McCombs

Poster for Field Day showing title.
Poster for Field Day

Time for some military training. A comical look into the lives of members of the United States armed forces.

Second lieutenant Joshua Copeland (Saesan) is just starting at the Combat Engineer Battalion. It is his first day there and he meets his superiors and general staff. Nervous and keen to make a good impression, each time he encounters a new face, he ends up having awkward conversations. Eventually, he ends up meeting martial arts expert Li Kuntz (Wayne) and the two develop a rivalry between them. Meanwhile, two clumsy marines are assigned to drive to the airport and pick up a new member of their unit.

Shot like a mockumentary, this TV comedy humorously brings the audience into the world of the U.S. army. The opening sequences are quite cool. It starts with a montage consisting of black-and-white footage depicting soldiers undergoing tough training and utilizing weaponry. It then moves on to the story. Each protagonist is introduced with a title card and they sometimes look into the camera as they speak. Occasionally, when a scene ends, it cuts to a brief sequence involving an army symbol moving towards or away from the screen and then cuts to the next scene. This interesting technique goes well with a story that takes place in the armed forces. The filmmakers also make effective use of split screen and wipe editing.

The humour is mostly verbal. Characters have awkward dialogues, during which they unwillingly make themselves look stupid or insult each other. Some are no-nonsense, while others are childish and play video games. There are misunderstandings and hand-to-hand combat training. The narrative contains two story lines: one focuses on Copeland as he attempts to learn who is who and what is what in his new regiment and the other is about two incompetent marines, whose task of locating a new marine goes wrong in many ways.

The cast do a good job in presenting themselves as military personnel and deliver entertaining performances. Saesan leads well as the main character, a well-meaning man, whose dream is to be part of the army. Wayne is the one who steals the show, as the aggressive, combat sports enthusiast.

Field Day is not anything special, but it is a good laugh. and the uniforms look great. With humour and an amusing soundtrack, it gives the viewers the opportunity to spend half an hour relaxing and enjoying themselves.



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