The Easy Lift short film review

★★★ Director: Sam Bradford Writer: Vincent Jerome Starring: Marta Kane, Vincent Jerome and Wallace Sollars Short Film Review by: Jack Cameron

The Easy Lift Movie Review

The Easy Lift movie poster

Veronika is a private eye, who one night, finds a man rifling through her case files. Thinking his job is finished and that Veronika poses no threat he tries to leave, but things soon turn violent as Veronika reveals she’s not as meek as he may have thought. In just a few short minutes of screen time Marta Kane, as Veronika, impressively shows that there’s more depth to her character than may at first meet the eye. Similarly, Vincent Jerome who, as well as writing the script, stars as Wallace, the ne’er do well attempting to steal from Veronika, goes from having all the power to none of it. While Wallace is forced against a desk he has to try and deliver all his dialogue as Veronika methodically breaks his arm. Certainly not for the squeamish! The Easy Lift plays well with audience expectation, often flipping the power balance; as Veronika interrogates Wallace, she will learn that she is only getting more out of her depth. This is escalated when a third player enters and further throws off the characters’ power dynamic. However, unfortunately, there isn’t much to hold our attention. The precise nature of the crime, and the files that Wallace is stealing, is never very clear. Instead, the short film focuses on the interaction of the characters, rather than plot to drive the movie forward. In many ways this is successful. Sam Bradford directs the action scenes well; movement is fast, and fluid and bones break with nauseating cracks and crunches. The decision to flood the room with neon coloured light, sets it apart from the current trend of gritty, grey action sequences. Indeed, in that way, it's reminiscent of the John Wick franchise. However, violence without established cause, can make for pretty mindless viewing. In part, it’s a classic throwback to the noir era. The characters are charismatic, and we can imagine that nearly everyone is harbouring secrets. The film isn’t long enough to build on this sense of mystery however and the imbalance of action and story does leave the audience wanting. The film’s core lies in the fight sequences and the production design both of which are really well-judged. The Easy Lift does get a lot of things right, but if it expanded its plot just a little more this would have been a really excellent short action thriller. Nevertheless, both Bradford and Jerome remain talents to watch out for. #JackCameron #LIFF #FilmFestival