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  • The PAntry Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS The PAntry Film Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Critic: Jason Knight | Posted on: Jul 18, 2024 Directed by: Ervis Zika Written by: Ervis Zika Starring: Sina -Valeska Jung A woman is tormented by strange occurrences in her home. A spooky short horror film from Germany that involves a person alone in a place where sinister and unexplained things are happening, possibly the doing of supernatural forces. In this story the person is Emily (Jung), a young woman who is alone inside her apartment and doing some cooking while listening to the radio. Her simple activities are interrupted by beculiar sounds (sort of knocking sounds) that seem to be coming from the pantry. Things rapidly get more and more tense and Emily begins to fear for her life. There are many elements here that are often seen in haunted-house films such as Paranormal Activity . These include knockings and sinister voices that do not appear to have a source, objects moving by themselves and the lights going out. All this put together makes this short quite a chilling experience, making the viewer dreading the discovery of the cause of these events. Since Emily is the only character in the film, the story relies heavily on Jung's performance in order to be effective and she nails it. Emily is distraught by what is happening around her, she grabs a knife and investigates, trying to find out what is going on and it is indicated that a creepy mask might be involved. People might have noticed that interestingly, the title has the letters P and A capitalised and this could be a reference to Paranormal Activity. The film relies a great deal on sound effects in order to create a frightening atmosphere and commendations go to Elias Hamman, Rab Ni Dnim and Sebastian Oswald. Oswald also worked on the ominous score and the song Charming B*tch that is heard in the film. This short is a haunted house horror film. A film about a woman being tormented by other-worldly forces. It might not have any original ideas, however it offers five spine-tigling minutes and those who watch it will probably never look at their pantry the same way again. About the Film Critic Jason Knight Short Film, World Cinema < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • Music Video Reviews | UK Film Review

    Music Video Reviews One of the most exciting sub-genres our critics review is music videos. They are often incredible pieces of storytelling, either in their own right or aligned with the song playing over them. On this page you will find a great selection of music video reviews from the team of critics at UK Film Review. ​ If you are a filmmaker or artist who would like us to review your music video, submit your film here . ​ When it comes to reviewing a music video, the process differs slightly from perhaps a narrative short film or documentary. The music has to be explored far more intimately than if it were a soundtrack because that's where the story originates from rather than being added further down the line. Music videos do conform to genres but these are often musical genres rather than film categories, for example pop, folk, rock, rap etc. So this will also influence the music video review our critics write because the target audience is going to be considered. ​ Music videos may take a variety of forms or even combine different aspects to create a different effect on the viewer. For example, it is common for a music video to contain a small narrative, as well as live performance footage. Top filmmakers making music videos will be able to immerse you into the song and story without leaving you feeling like you have just watched a promo piece. ​ Choreography is also a common trait in music videos, with dance sequences and flash mobs recurring - often in pop music videos. Editors of music videos will have their work cut out to ensure the choreography looks tight and engaging without it feeling staged or lifeless. ​ Hopefully the array of music video reviews you see below will include some gems for you to peruse. Don't forget to scroll to the bottom of the article, as we often include the actual music video so you can watch it for yourself. Rooftop Screamers Joe Beck Hot Chip Eleanor Swati Verma A New Kind of Life Jason Knight Vaarwell - Quarter Life Crisis - EP Campaign Patrick Foley KYTLY - "Neverending" Patrick Foley Rebel Rob Jones Millais Flower Honey - Sugarless Rob Jones Som.1-Ultimatum Jason Knight My Brain Does Not Compute William Hemingway alexjames96 Jun 6 2 min Ain’t my Vibe Short Music Video Review alexjames96 Mar 17 2 min Cinerama (Music Video) Short Film Review alexjames96 Dec 19, 2023 2 min Homecoming (Music Video) Short Film Review alexjames96 Nov 16, 2023 2 min Sheep F-cked In the Head Short Film Review Theo Aug 1, 2022 2 min Service for The King short film review Chris Olson Sep 28, 2021 2 min Stroke Code Music Video Review More Film Reviews

  • Short Film Reviews | UK Film Review

    Short Film Reviews Welcome to the UK Film Review page for short film reviews . Here you will find some of the best and brightest sparks in a sea of cinema. Filmmakers from across the globe submit their short films to us to be reviewed, and our Contributors lovingly dissect them. If you would like one of our team to write a film review of your short film, please use the form below or visit our Submit Your Film page Our short film reviews are written by passionate film critics across the UK and aim to highlight and promote terrific filmmaking when we find it. We are always honest with our reviews, so if you are looking to submit your short film for review, please do so knowing that we will not alter what we have said because you don't like it. There is a wealth of amazing talent in the short film industry, and we hope by writing film reviews about this underexposed creativity we can get your movies to a new audience...but we need your help. Please join in the chatter on our social media channels so that we can grow our community and share the joy. Use the buttons in the footer to Like us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter, and Subscribe to us on YouTube #supportindiefilm. Get Your Short Film Reviewed ↓ Lawrence Bennie 2 days ago 3 min Bridge short film review alexjames96 Jun 6 2 min Bird Drone Short Film Review alexjames96 Jun 6 2 min Ain’t my Vibe Short Music Video Review alexjames96 Jun 6 2 min Surprise Short Film Review alexjames96 Apr 19 2 min A Happy Ending Short Film Review alexjames96 Apr 19 2 min Shear Disturbance Short Film Review alexjames96 Apr 19 2 min Watch What I Do Short Film Review alexjames96 Mar 17 2 min After Hours Short Movie Review alexjames96 Mar 17 2 min Cinerama (Music Video) Short Film Review Chris Olson Mar 1 3 min Film Podcast: George Clooney Rowing Biopic Scoops Film of the Month Chris Olson Feb 22 3 min Film Podcast: Anthony Hopkins drama crowned "Film of the Month" alexjames96 Feb 17 2 min Mannequin Short Film Review alexjames96 Feb 17 2 min The Separation Short Film Review alexjames96 Feb 17 2 min Bare Foot Short Film Review William Hemingway Jan 18 8 min Filmmaker Interview with Jiwon Lee alexjames96 Dec 19, 2023 2 min Dominion Short Film Review alexjames96 Dec 19, 2023 2 min Homecoming (Music Video) Short Film Review alexjames96 Dec 19, 2023 2 min Sunset Drive Short Film Review Chris Olson Nov 28, 2023 5 min Filmmaker Interview with Alexander Ratter alexjames96 Nov 16, 2023 2 min Purely Cosmetic Short Film Review More Film Reviews The PAntry Jason Knight King Ed Jason Knight The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Patrick Foley Pain Chris Olson I Don't Like Shitting In Public William Hemingway Love in the Time of Caller ID Joe Beck The Robbery Jason Knight Soulmate Patrick Foley Going Dutch Chris Olson Strike Jason Knight Mafia Patrick Foley Love in the Time of Caller ID Jason Knight Optillus James Learoyd Dear Imelda Jason Knight Ten With a Flag James Learoyd The Milk Situation William Hemingway Homesick James Learoyd Hamdardi Chris Buick Kotsuage Patrick Foley What Men Do For Love Jason Knight Love Beyond Dreams Chris Buick The Strange Story Of Blasting Betty Swati Verma Overshadow Patrick Foley STI: Sexually Transmitted Introductions Jason Knight Off the Beat Swati Verma Load More Reviews What is a short film review? A short film review is often written by a movie critic and it's their opinion on a film that is less than sixty minutes long. Short film reviews still explore every aspect of a movie. How do I write a short film review? Writing a short film review needs to cover multiple aspects of the movie. Including the script, the characters, performances, cinematography, score & sound design, editing and so on. How long should a film review be? A film review should be as long as the house style. Some publications provide lengthier reviews than others. A general minimum word count would be 300. How much money do film critics make? Film critic salaries depend massively on their publication. Many film critics are freelancers, meaning they get paid per review and sometimes this is based on word count. Making money through film reviews can be challenging.

  • Film Reviews | UK Film Review

    Film Reviews Here at UK Film Review we like to tackle all kinds film reviews. Our writers come from all walks of life, and feel passionate about critiquing the movies they watch. From the latest Theatrical Releases to Short Films, Indie Films, Documentaries and even Animation, the contributors of UK Film Review are as eager to please as Dev Patel in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011). If you are a filmmaker, or are working in film PR and want to promote one of your clients, please get in touch using the Submit Your Film button under the drop-down menu for Home. Take a look at our list of film reviews below from some of the hottest releases in UK cinemas. Simply click the image of the review you would like, or the title of the movie. Or use the search button to find the movie you are looking for. We have given any feature length film a star rating (out of 5) in order to help viewers sort the Citizen Kanes from the Waterworlds, the Inceptions from the Transformers. Michael Bay will be given a fair film review from our writers, but that probably will not go in his favour. Speaking of Filmmakers, head over to our Filmmaker Features page for awesome articles about some of the best filmmaking geniuses who ever lived. Movie Trailers are also available, either underneath the film reviews, or on the Movie Trailers page. And lastly, if you like your film reviews verbalised. Simply because reading is boring and listening is marvellous, then make sure you Subscribe to the UK Film Review Podcast. Our critics offer up some banterous opinions on the best and worst movies across all genres. Head over to the Podcast page, or click this link to go straight to iTunes. If you would like to read or view any of the following, simply use the navigation. Alternatively, you can click on one of the images to read the film reviews here, or simply have a ganders at the lovely movie artwork on display. Remember to listen to film reviews on our regular film podcast. GET REVIEWED average rating is 4 out of 5 Crumb Catcher Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Fly Me To The Moon Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Soulmate Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Longlegs Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Dandelion Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Mafia Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Milk Situation Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Maxxxine Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Despicable Me 4 Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Kotsuage Read Review Chris Olson Mar 8 2 min Film Podcast - Dune: Part 2 Chris Olson Mar 1 3 min Film Podcast: George Clooney Rowing Biopic Scoops Film of the Month Jan 20, 2023 3 min TAR FILM REVIEW Taryll Baker Oct 13, 2022 2 min Empire of Light - Film Review Oct 11, 2022 3 min Bones and All LFF Review Oct 7, 2022 3 min White Noise (2022) LFF Review Sep 20, 2022 2 min Sanctuary TIFF Review UK Film Review Sep 13, 2022 5 min FrightFest 2022 Highlights May 25, 2022 3 min Top Gun: Maverick Film Review Apr 23, 2022 3 min The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent Film Review Spoilers in our film reviews As with all digital forms of expression sometimes people may find something that upsets them online. Spoilers can often be one of these things! Whilst we do our best to ensure that major plot points, twists, character deaths and celebrity cameos are not found in our reviews, it can sometimes be difficult to judge what each and every film lover on the planet would to be a spoiler. If you feel that one of our film reviews contains one too many details then please do let us (politely) know using our social media platforms. We may then take serious action, such as expelling the critic responsible from this and every other movie publication past and present, declaring war against the studio for leading our writer into temptation, or we may do nothing at all. To be honest, it is most likely going to be the latter unless some serious rules have been broken. You may also see some movie trailers in our reviews that could also contain potential spoilers. In which case anyone who is hoping to avoid these should probably not click the play button on them. Or click the play button, turn the sound down on your device, then leave the room for a least 28 minutes whilst the trailer finishes and leaves your life naturally. You may be wondering what you could do with all 28 of those minutes! Why not read some more film reviews on another device? Or make a short film of your cat playing with a piece of string? Spend it wisely guys and gals.

  • Latest Film Reviews | UK Film Review

    Latest Film Reviews average rating is 4 out of 5 The PAntry Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Crumb Catcher Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 King Ed Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Pain Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 I Don't Like Shitting In Public Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 Love in the Time of Caller ID Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Fly Me To The Moon Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The Robbery Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Soulmate Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Longlegs Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Dandelion Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Going Dutch Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Strike Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Mafia Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Love in the Time of Caller ID Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Optillus Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Dear Imelda Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Ten With a Flag Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Storm Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Milk Situation Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Homesick Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Il Cinema Ritrovato Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Hamdardi Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Maxxxine Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Gradually, Then Suddenly: The Bankruptcy of Detroit Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Despicable Me 4 Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Kotsuage Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Of God's Men Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Spirit of The Downs Read Review average rating is 1 out of 5 The Lost Mantle of Elijah Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 What Men Do For Love Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Love Beyond Dreams Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Strange Story Of Blasting Betty Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 A Quiet Place: Day One Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Overshadow Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Satu-Year of the Rabbit Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The Devil's Bath Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Solo Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Janet Planet Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The Vourdalak Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Green Border Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 STI: Sexually Transmitted Introductions Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Off the Beat Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The Truth Seekers Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Coney Island Cousins Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Mammoth: Chasing the Rainbow: Chapter 8 Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Banal & Adama Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Chestnut Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Thelma Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Someone Dies! Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 It's Always That Feeling Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Staggered Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The Bikeriders Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Out of Time Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Small Showers Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Second Thought Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Luke 6:37 Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 The People in the Walls Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 This Is Only a Test Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Boys Like You Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Inside Out 2 Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Marching On Together Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Ride Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Bleach Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Trick? or Treat? Read Review average rating is 1 out of 5 Metaverse Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 Disrupted Expectations 4: Art, Words, and Mind Powers Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Kill Your Lover Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Blossom Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Dinner With My Family Read Review average rating is 1 out of 5 Disrupted Expectations 3: Setting the Scene Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Hit Man Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 The Watchers Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 Sopann - The Sequel Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Pawn Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Parasocial Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Wish Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 On The Ridge Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 The Sublime Hubris Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Ti Amo, Mr. Nibbles Read Review average rating is 2 out of 5 Bird of Paradise Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Leech Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Shed Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Bad Seed Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 In a Violent Nature Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Tiou Dou Goun (Tomorrow's Village) Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Lost Soulz Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Areia Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Pandemonium Read Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Smriti Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Deloping Read Review average rating is 5 out of 5 Grand Tour Read Review average rating is 1 out of 5 Tsoro Da Ruwa Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Bardo Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Seine Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Queen of the Deuce Read Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Anora Read Review

  • Film Reviews and Movie Trailers | UK Film Review

    FILM REVIEWS UK UK Film Review is a film reviews website based in London, UK. We promote films and movie trailers from around the world and support indie films that would usually find it hard to find the spotlight against the bigger films of cinema. From the latest blockbusters, to small indie cinema, we tackle as many films as we can. Reviewing them from all aspects, not just how many digital landscapes they blow up using CGI. We also review short films in the UK and internationally, helping filmmakers to promote their movies and raise their profile. If you would like to have a short or indie film reviewed by us, please submit all info using the button below. Take a look around, enjoy the spoils of filmmaking, film festivals and artistic expression. Our merry band of film critics are constantly hard at work, writing film reviews, or watching movie trailers for some of the most exciting movies coming out in UK cinemas. So to keep their morale up, please be nice...or at least funny if you choose to troll. Because, in the immortal words of Rick Moranis in the movie Spaceballs, "Keep firing A**holes!". By the way, on this film reviews website, you may see several references to Spaceballs. If you have not seen that classic Mel Brooks film, you MUST seek it out and tell us what you think. SUBMIT YOUR FILM Are You a Film Podcast Fan? Film critics Chris Olson and Brian Penn host a monthly podcast for all types of film fans! ​ Whether you like the latest blockbuster releases, or streaming is your thing - we have you covered. ​ We even review short and independent films on the podcast. ​ Our final review is usually for a "Nostalgia" pick - something from the past worth revisiting. Previous picks for this have included Jaws, The Fly, and Good Will Hunting. ​ Search UK Film Review Podcast wherever you like to listen and join our global community of film lovers. Film Reviews from UK film critics LATEST REVIEWS The PAntry Crumb Catcher King Ed The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Pain I Don't Like Shitting In Public Love in the Time of Caller ID Fly Me To The Moon The Robbery Soulmate Longlegs Dandelion Load More

  • Crumb Catcher Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS Crumb Catcher Film Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Critic: Hope Madden | Posted on: Jul 17, 2024 Directed by: Chris Stotchdopole Written by: Chris Skotchdopole, Larry Fessenden, Rigo Garay Starring: John Speredakos, Ella Rae Peck, Rigo Garay You want to see a nice evening unravel quickly? Chris Skotchdopole takes an intriguing premise—groom gets too drunk on his wedding night and can’t quite remember what happened—and layers on something hypnotically, catastrophically banal. Leah (Ella Rae Peck) and Shane (Rigo Garay) have not started their marriage off on the best foot. Last night was a bust, but maybe a quiet honeymoon at Leah’s boss’s gorgeous, art-bedecked cabin will right things. Garay and Peck develop a believable antagonism, Skotchdople’s first sleight of hand. Because the performers and the writing (penned by the director along with Garay and Larry Fessenden) slowly deepen and tenderize the relationship so that you buy them as a couple, and hope for their best. And then. Most couples contain one person who cannot bear to be rude to someone no matter how obliviously, insistently annoying that person is. The other member of the couple can’t decide who to be angrier with, the annoying stranger or their own placating partner. John (the magnificently deranged John Speredakos) is that annoying creature, and you have absolutely met this guy before: doesn’t pick up on hints, aggressively friendly, needy and clearly has an agenda. So it is with much contention that the newlyweds greet John late on their first night together at the cabin. What follows is a bold mix of home invasion horror, comedy of manners, and absurdist timeshare nightmare. Skotchdopole’s feature debut benefits from his years behind the camera, including shooting Fessenden’s 2019 Frankenstein analogy, Depraved . Crumb Catcher ’s disorienting camera emphasizes its chaotic, freakshow quality and visually represents the rising anxiety of the hellish social trap. Garay delivers an often internal, tender performance nicely offset by Peck’s droll sarcasm. Lorraine Farris turns in strong support work as well, but Speredakos owns this show. His display of desperation and entitlement turned delusional would be hilarious were it not so unsettling. Skotchdopole’s managed a tightwire of tones, delivering a tense and compelling thriller that turns banality into a weirdly funny nightmare. About the Film Critic Hope Madden Theatrical Release < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • King Ed Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS King Ed Film Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Critic: Jason Knight | Posted on: Jul 16, 2024 Directed by: Nick Fascitelli Written by: Nick Fascitelli Starring: Brendan Scannell, Sufe Bradshaw, Nick Fascitelli, Jack Plotnick A young gay man is looking for his soulmate. The protagonist of this short comedy drama that mixes fantasy with reality is Ed (Scannell). Ed is in a relationship with Joseph (Fascitelli) and when he becomes aware of one of Joseph's playlists, he adores it and is absolutely convinced that the two of them are destined to be together because Joseph created it. However, Ed imagines that he is communicating with an oracle (Bradshaw), who informs him that the list was not created by his current partner. So, Ed embarks on a personal journey, hoping to find out who put together that playlist, leading to disappointments and revelations. The way the screenplay works is by being a romance, a comedy and a mystery. Ed plays detective, hoping to find the missing pieces to the puzzle and complete his romantic life and find happiness. One of the best aspects in this film is Ed. Ed is a likeable guy who believes in destiny and he embarks on a mission to find the love of his life. His belief in destiny is clear by the fact that he is convinced that the creator of the playlist is the one he must be with. Since he believes in destiny, he is significantly influenced by the oracle as he does not question her when she states that Joseph is not responsible for the special playlist. Scannell's impressive performance is at times dramatic and at other times amusing. The oracle is another thing that stands out. First of all, her appearance is quite memorable, with interesting clothing by costume designer Bailey Soudelier that includes a rather stylised mask. Then, there is her laid-back behaviour that includes a good sense of humour. Since a playlist plays a key part in the narrative, it comes as no surprise that there are a few songs in the soundtrack and good ones too, some of which are Harry Hippie by Bobby Womack, Fast Car by Tracy Chapman, We Belong by Pat Benator and Galactic Love by The Tempers. These tracks, along with the addition of a beautiful choir song make the audio of this film rather pleasant to the ears. This short is a journey of self-discovery. A journey that has its funny and awkward moments and its moments of drama. Scannell's performance, the soundtrack and T.J. Williams Jr.'s splendid cinematography provide high qualities to this film and so does the message that it delivers which is that self-discovery can lead to happiness. About the Film Critic Jason Knight Short Film, LGBTQ+ < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam Film Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Critic: Patrick Foley | Posted on: Jul 16, 2024 Directed by: Duke Ross Written by: Duke Ross Starring: Duke Ross, Victor Acosta, Tommy Chong Just how many ballads get written these days? It seems romantic sentimentality is determined to rival ‘The Book of’ as the 2020’s most common film title prefix. Though it must be said, it’s unlikely any of them can quite match the oddity and uniqueness of The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam – Duke Ross’ obscure animated odyssey. The eponymous Sam (Ross) embarks on a quest to find the world’s greatest bourbon – a concoction named ‘Angels Teeth’. Partnering with avid writer Bucket (Victor Acosta), he ventures out with a map to find the drink – encountering unusual allies, adversaries and plains of reality along the way. Mixing crude animation with psychotropic live action performances, The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam is distinctive and likely divisive – though admirably unafraid to aim at something original and unique. The film is less of a defined narrative story as an opportunity for Duke Ross and Victor Acosta to experiment with humour and visual aplomb. Harkening back to late-night stoner cartoons of the 80s and 90s with its basic outlined character designs that intentionally jank through their scenes, whilst overlayed over vibrant live action backgrounds, audiences are likely to find the imagery of the film discombobulating. Whilst it won’t be to everyone’s taste – it is certainly never dull, and certain scenes like those in Birdie’s (Jennica Anusua) diner stand out in way their inanity is made interesting. The undoubted highlight of the film is the voice acting. Duke Ross echoes H. Jon Benjamin’s work as Sterling Archer for Sam – the film’s wisecracking, world-weary and unpredictable protagonist. Acosta as Bucket works brilliantly as Sam’s sidekick, and their pair’s clear enjoyment in playing their parts is transmitted into the film making both characters an enjoyable watch. The rest of the cast add their own touches of character into their roles – making the unusual journey of the leading pair an engaging experience thanks to the vibrancy of the performances. Where the voice work will please the majority of viewers, the script itself is likely to be more divisive. The film’s comedy is as crude as the artwork at times – never shying away from innuendo or toilet humour. It does feel there are some symptoms often seen in adult animation of creators who work on the assumption that because cartoon characters are saying something crass, that this adds to the wit. Some viewers may agree, but this was hit and miss for me. The film isn’t reliant on this, and there are some genuinely well staged moments that will guarantee laughs. The Ballad of Straw Hat Sam isn’t for everyone, and some viewers will find its tone of humour and animation style off-putting. However strong voice acting, and a commitment to the abstract means this bizarre creation will find an audience. It’s better to be divisive than boring, and it is commendable that Duke Ross’s animated short is willing to take risks. About the Film Critic Patrick Foley Digital / DVD Release, Short Film, Animation < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • Pain Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS Pain Film Review average rating is 4 out of 5 Critic: Chris Olson | Posted on: Jul 16, 2024 Directed by: Marcus Kartal Written by: Marcus Kartal Starring: Francis Nunnery, Lara Levy Filmmaker Marcus Kartal delivers a challenging, visceral and ambitious short film with Pain . Starring Francis Nunnery and Lara Levy, it’s a cinematic experience aimed to explore the filmmaker’s own struggle with sobriety, incorporating elements of parenthood, and ultimately strives to be unapologetically difficult to watch. Julien and Celeste (Nunnery and Levy respectively) are a couple battling a traumatic situation. The former is suffering from seizures and has bizarre episodes, whilst the latter attempts to be there for her partner whilst also trying to deal with her own emotions about their desperate predicament. When the pair are thrown into a situation where they need to look after a baby, we see an explosion of tumultuous interactions within their relationship that are as graphic as they are disturbing. There is an enduring, intense sound design used within the short film Pain to chop up scenes and create massive unease in the audience. Listen through headphones and the severe build-up of noise can feel overwhelming. The crying baby is also a significant part of this growing sense of foreboding and is important for the thematic depth. Kartal doesn’t soak the movie in dialogue, keeping it minimal for the most part and often playing with coherence in order to further disorient his audience. He has stated on social media that the film stems from a dream he had whilst trying to come clean from his own substance abuse and the movie has a potent dreamlike/nightmarish balance. Not only is the sound brilliantly executed here, but there’s also a stunning visual assortment that awaits any viewer of Pain , with stark moments of bizarre behaviour involving eggs, tattoos, needles and more that will compel you to watch. The movie has an experimental feel to some of the scenes that is almost trippy and most definitely disturbing. Trainspotting was one film that came to mind during viewing, as did some of the weirder Lynchian movies. The result is artfully done and showcases Kartal as an impressive filmmaking talent. As a parent, this film is a hard watch. The intense crying and difficulty in getting your bearings will be familiar for anyone who has experienced the journey of new parenthood. Whilst the story’s elements of substance abuse and relationship anguish will give a wider appeal still. It’s not a film you will relish watching but often it’s our most painful moments we just can’t look away from. About the Film Critic Chris Olson Short Film < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • I Don't Like Shitting In Public Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS I Don't Like Shitting In Public Film Review average rating is 3 out of 5 Critic: William Hemingway | Posted on: Jul 15, 2024 Directed by: Ken Abalos Written by: Ken Abalos Starring: Nathan Jonathan, Dave Mygind Let’s be honest – nobody likes having to use public toilets. It’s not like it was in the olden days, when everything was made of tile and marble and brass, and there was a gentleman in suit and tie ready with a flannel and a spritz of eau de cologne to buoy you back up before you re-entered whichever public space you had graciously exited from. Nowadays it’s all plastic-coated cubicles which are invariably filthy and smelly and which harbour an unknown amount of seriously gnarly germs. You’re lucky if there’s any toilet paper in the holder, without it being unravelled all over the floor or stuffed down the pan, and even luckier if the paper itself is useable and holds together enough for your fingers not to punch holes through it. You also have to deal with the fact that some people don’t seem to know how to work a flush, and if you’re a guy, that everything, and I mean everything whether it’s wet or not, is covered in piss. It’s no wonder then, that some people develop an aversion to doing their business in public restrooms. For some it’s not even about all of that other stuff above, but more about their own noises and smells and shame which means that they develop ‘shy bowel syndrome’ or ‘psychogenic faecal retention’ or ‘parcopresis’ if we are to give it its proper name. Obviously though, this is an area of the human condition which is ripe for the picking when it comes to a little bit of comedy, and as such writer/director Ken Abalos has decided to go there for his new short, I Don’t Like Shitting In Public . With it being just over four minutes long, you can get most of what you need to know about Abalos’ short film from its title. As such, we follow an unnamed protagonist as he goes about his day at work, having his lunch at his desk, getting weirded out by the slippery slurpings and cacophony of crunching which surrounds him like a bad ASMR recording. Pretty soon our guy feels the familiar rumblings in his tummy and realises that he might not get a chance to finish his lunch as something more pressing this way comes. Cue, a quick dash to the loos, some cowering in the cubicles, some peeking out from behind the door and a very unsatisfying result which offers no relief. So, there’s nothing else for it, our guy then decides he’s got to go home and crimp one off there, so he makes his excuses, lies to his work colleagues and heads off to find the only porcelain throne which meets his standards – until…. And so, there’s a nice little twist towards the end of I Don’t Like Shitting In Public which, in truth, rounds off and saves the story from being rather banal and empty of character. The minimal dialogue offers rather few chances for laughs and while Nathan Jonathan does well at portraying the very real fear of pooping your own pants, he is in no way a Mr Bean or Lee Evans in terms of his silent, physical comedy. There’s not enough in the four minutes of I Don’t Like Shitting In Public to really grab the viewer and certainly nothing new, as it’s an old joke we’ve seen plenty of times on TV. The ending does bolster things slightly though, and the rest of the production is put together nicely, so if like Leslie Nielsen at eighty-four, you’re still childish enough to laugh at a good bit of toilet humour, this may well be the short film for you. About the Film Critic William Hemingway Short Film < All Reviews Next Film Review >

  • Love in the Time of Caller ID Review | Film Reviews

    HOME | FILMS | REVIEWS Love in the Time of Caller ID Film Review average rating is 2 out of 5 Critic: Joe Beck | Posted on: Jul 15, 2024 Directed by: Neil Sandhoefner Written by: Neil Sandhoefner Starring: Luke Engel, Peter Engel, Amber Rinehart It’s always difficult for children when their parents split apart, or, for whatever reason, are no longer together. One of the hardest stages of that process is when their parents, or parent, somewhat inevitably moves on to a new partner, taking up much of their time and attention, whilst also causing a child’s emotional state to go into turmoil. ‘Love in the Time of Caller ID’, attempts to depict that effect which such circumstances has on children, though lacks the specificity and nuance to truly grapple with the subject matter at hand in any real depth. If nothing else, the creativity of ‘Love in the Time of Caller ID’ must surely be praised. It has its own distinctive style, with characters that, until its final few moments, speak only through speak bubbles, as each frame is a different drawing. It is a unique way to present a story and to try and broach such a subject, and such a fresh approach to storytelling should be praised. At no point does this artistic style feel as though it detracts from the film, and at no point is sound, or even any conventional form of animation missed. It is a wonderful expression of craftsmanship. It’s title obviously stems from Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s seminal novel ‘Love in the Time of Cholera’, though where the novel is romantic, Neil Sandhoefner’s short film focuses on the parental love two brothers have for their mother, and vice versa, and how that is impacted by the changes of her new relationship. She’s bought an answering machine for them so that they won’t miss calls, and the film, plot wise at least, centres around the answer they’ve left on there, and their desire for their mother to call and hear it as she has gone to spend the night with her new partner, Chuck, and his family. The fundamental issue is that there is a paradox at the heart of ‘Love in the Time of Caller ID’, that can only be explained in a way that takes away from everything the film is trying to say. It is illogical that the mother would leave her two kids alone unsupervised if they are still young enough to get excited by answering machines and caller id’s, yet it is also illogical that they are older than that and cannot accept that their mother has gone away for a night. The two things don’t make sense together, and so the film’s believability starts to fall apart and it all begins to feel rather whimsical and out of touch with reality. There is the framing device of a science fiction classic that the two brothers are watching on tv, yet that fails to bring real nuance to the film, instead only convoluting the narrative. Its attempts to depict the emotional turmoil and understanding of parental love comes across as poorly thought out and lacking any firm idea of what parental love truly means. Therefore, whilst the creativity of ‘Love in the Time of Caller ID’ is admirable, it lacks any real depth and beyond its technical aspects is a largely frustrating film. About the Film Critic Joe Beck Short Film < All Reviews Next Film Review >

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