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Hattie Dalton's 'The Banker' tells the story of a shy, nervous man who
works in a sperm bank who is madly in love with a the woman who works
at the artificial insemination clinic where he delivers his weekly
This wonderful short film won a BAFTA and deservedly so. The Banker is an original and imaginative piece of storytelling that begins as a comedy but becomes something very different, and with this being a short film, does so within minutes. The film ends on an oddly-uplifting and sweet note which comes as a wonderful surprise.
The film is led by a charming and engaging performance from Michael Sheen, currently very popular in film, TV and theatre, for among others, his portrayals of David Frost in 'Frost/Nixon' on stage and Tony Blair in 'The Queen' in cinemas. He has also proved himself in a variety of roles on TV, recently playing both Emperor Nero and HG Wells.
This sweet, charming and highly entertaining film is one to look out for, as is its writer-director who shows great promise for the future in the British film industry.
A rather scruffy man works as a lab technician in a sperm bank. Other
than a pleasure in his work his only other passion seems to be a secret
longing for the woman that works in a similar function at the clinic
where he delivers the sperm samples.
This is a rather strange film that doesn't seem to settle easily on one style and indeed surprised me by the direction it did eventually take. It opens with a basic comedy montage of men masturbating which I found amusing but did make me wonder what the rest of the film was going to be like. After this we get into the Banker a little bit and realise he has a longing for this woman, leading me to believe that this desire would be the focus of the film. And of course it was but not in the way I had expected and I was quite taken with the conclusion to the film and the way that director Dalton revealed it.
As writer I think she could have done more to strengthen this clever idea and indeed the opening montage did smack of filler rather than substance. However she does do the job and it was a minor issue. Erstwhile Tony Blair, Michael Sheen does a good job of being geeky and a little bit creepy in the title role and he does make the end work well by virtue of his performance. Not a perfect short film then and not one with the depth to make for repeat viewings but still an entertaining and quite clever affair that is worth a look.
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