Directed by Freddy Lond Starring Alexander Nima and Nicolas Dillen Short Film Review by Monica Jowett
Medicine Men is a short film which follows Said and Franco, two young men who rob pharmacy stores and then sell the stolen medicine from the trunk of their car. But one normal day takes a turn for the worse and a nightmare for the two men begins. Written and directed by Freddy Lond, the film depicts a powerful message about friendship.
Said (Alexander Nima) and Franco (Nicolas Dillen) have a close but volatile relationship, mainly due to Franco’s drug use, and each of them have their own personal reasons for robbing drug stores as a way to make money. Nima and Dillen give great performances in the respective roles. They act aggressive and show a lot of attitude, a typical stance of young men who are in over their heads in a gangster and drug filled world.
Said is the more sympathetic character of the two, who has a father to support, and even when he acts out violently it feels justified. On the other hand Franco is reckless and childish, yet his flaws seem hard to punish.
The cinematography in Medicine Men makes it stand out. The pink-coloured, hazy filters give it a sun soaked feel, as if the bright weather is adding to the heightened tension between the two leads. The frequent close ups of the characters provide an intimacy with them, which is needed as it is hard to feel for the young men who rob pharmacies and take drugs. The smooth editing delivers a professional cut to the film and creates the right amount of pace to keep you interested in the story as it unfolds.
The music, from composer Heldur Maripuu, is the highlight of this short film. Dance and techno vibes fit in with the sunny, hazy cinematography style and the fast paced lives Said and Franco lead, and cutting between the music to nothing, just the sound of someone rolling up a bank note to snort drugs through, quickly grabs your attentions.
A shrewdly produced short film about these young men keeps you involved in the journey of Said and Franco and leaves you wanting to know more. Lond has crafted an intelligent film and it will be interesting to see where his next projects take him.