Boyd Mitchler and his family must spend Christmas with his estranged family of misfits. Upon realizing that he left all his son's gifts at home, he hits the road with his dad in an attempt to make the 8-hour round trip before sunrise.
John is taken on a murder-fueled ride by a mysterious stranger that transforms the weak-willed, disillusioned husband and father into a desperate hero willing to go to any length to protect his family.
Samuel L. Jackson,
Pete and Debbie are both about to turn 40, their kids hate each other, both of their businesses are failing, they're on the verge of losing their house, and their relationship is threatening to fall apart.
I'm not in the habit of writing about shorts, perhaps for fear that the review might be longer than the film itself. Then again, that would depend on what I have to say about said movie. So there, let's start with the movie.
"Titans" - a big title for a short film, no? - follows two deserters from the Russian Army in what looks like the late stages of the Russian civil war. After an opening charge that throws you off with its pretty brazen fascist undertones, the story really begins with our two main characters surviving a massacre, and setting off on their own to escape their country. They run into some pretty groovy violence along the way.
I had to review this title. It surprised me enough to get me thinking about it for quite a while. I don't usually like to talk about shorts, because they either revolve around gimmicks, or take themselves too seriously. "Titans" was very refreshing in that regard. It felt like something I and my friends would actually want to go out and see on a big screen. Old school entertainment, with a few neat additions. The actors were good, especially the kid, who I'd first seen in "Super 8", where he stood out. What really got me, though, was the direction and the music. In short, the thing looks amazing, dirty, gritty, gorgeous landscapes... and the action scenes - this is a war/adventure film after all - were expertly put together. The music was breathtaking, rather surprisingly for a short (student?) film.
I haven't seen this listed at many festivals, but I do hope it becomes widely available soon. It's that rare film you wish was longer, and hopefully the people who made this can turn it into a feature some day.
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