Directed by Sean Meehan
Starring Erik Potempa, Timothy J. Cox, Jocelyn DeBoer & Michael Oberholtzer
Short film review by Lorenzo Lombardi
Amusing situational and sweet romantic comedy ensues in this short film, Over Coffee, written and directed by Sean Meehan. Meehan’s film is quirky and energetic fun that ultimately leaves you rooting for the main character’s goal.
That goal is from office worker Andrew (Erik Potempa). He has a crush on his co-worker, Carla (Jocelyn DeBoer), and wants to win her over one day, overcoming his shyness. He sees an opportunity when she is talking to her overly stringent boss, Hamilton Rice (Timothy J. Cox). As he relentlessly dictates orders over the phone, she stumbles in her organization and forgets Mr. Rice’s daily ordered coffee. Andrew then gives a votive to get it for her.
Subsequently, Andrew’s coffee order goes wrong, thus leaving him with a race against time as Mr. Rice gets closer to the office. This makes for a suitable and interesting set-up. Before all this, however, we get to see Andrew’s other co-worker Dave (Michael Oberholtzer) as he trades his own provocative thoughts as he torments Andrew with his “sexting” undertakings, making for a funny conversation.
Over Coffee is filled with likable characters, swift editing and decent dialogue. I particularly admired some of the nuances seen in this film such as in the non-linear introduction, in which we see a character in a situation that the viewer is not aware of. However, after the viewer has finished Over Coffee, they can go back and recognise the character’s actions. I personally rewound the film to that scene to see where it belonged chronologically, and that created more depth.
Over Coffee’s standout performance is within the boss, Hamilton Rice, played to a tee in short but memorable screen time by short film veteran Cox. In a scene with Mr. Rice entering the office, we see him conveying his disdaining superiority over his employees, and he dominates the screen funnily. Another nuance is seen when the camera is alternating between low angles and high angles. As Andrew and Mr. Rice are conversing, we see that the angle is making the boss look more powerful, but as the camera focuses on Andrew, the viewer notices how short he actually is. Or at least, how I did, and how it made me giggle.
Over Coffee may not have the best production values, underlying themes or storytelling depth that the best romantic comedies are known for. Sound quality alternates and the plot is very simplistic. This can all be forgiven, however, as the conclusion is satisfying, it is overall well-made and I thoroughly enjoyed it as a whole. For fans of the rom-com and the quirky, this will give you a caffeine-esque boost.
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