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The Tattooist short film review


★★★

Directed by: #MichaelWong

Starring: #WangYanhu, #LuLi, #MyraMala

Short Film Review by: #BenjaminSchofield


The Tattooist short movie poster

Well, this film certainly exists.


Although, I’m forced to ask the question “is this a film?”; it’s over before you even have time to answer. There’s no real plot, I guess there’s some sort of characters, but really they’re just actors that are on the screen, rather than named, fleshed out, speaking characters. They’re effectively props. That’s not to say that the actors give poor performances, just that they’re not really given anything to do, particularly given the film’s short runtime.


In fact, all technical aspects of the film are sort of brilliant. The editing is jarring and confusing in a way that wonderfully compliments the mysterious tone of the film. And the #cinematography allows for some gorgeous shots, shaky, exciting movements, and beautifully colourful lighting. The sound design blends eerie sound effects with dramatic music to further enhance the feelings of horror and suspense. The set and costume design present a desolate dystopic world, sickening you to your core. Then it’s over.


There’s really not much to say about this film because there’s not much a film there to say anything about. It’s a simple concept, which can be summed up in two words, “scary tattooist”, and the concept is executed pretty darn well, but then that’s it. There’s no character development or expansion of this world or really any explanation as to what’s going on. The film intrigues and excites but never pays off on what its offering. It’s all foreplay and no orgasm, and the foreplay doesn’t even last very long; just a couple minutes of a hand job and a kiss on the cheek and then its lights out and time for bed.


Ultimately, The Tattooist plays out more like a trailer than a fully-fledged film in its own right; it sets up a nice idea and displays some genuinely fantastic visuals, and honestly I’d like to see a full length film on this premise. But for the moment, that’s all it is: a premise.