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The Barista (2013)

The local coffee shop barista may be hiding a deep dark secret.

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Richard
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Elise
Liz Venz ...
(as Elizabeth Venz)
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Dan
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The local coffee shop barista may be hiding a deep dark secret.

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Short | Comedy | Horror

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12 October 2013 (USA)  »

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A joke with a way-too-long build-up
26 August 2015 | by See all my reviews

IMDb the barista (Short)

I searched YouTube to find this, because I'd seen John Dies At The End, and I wanted to see one of the leads in that - Chase (a name which was once nice, but, is now sorely overused) Williamson.

Lately, I've seen 'actors' putting their own 'trivia' listings in pages about themselves, and I've seen people who've made films, which, are not just amateurish, but, will never - ever - be shown anywhere, never seen by anyone (but, by themselves) posting this garbage here, under the guise it'll help them get 'exposure.'

Wrong. It won't. It's not just annoying, it confuses people.

This short - The Barista - almost comes close to straddling this line.

It is well put-together, but, in this day and age of Macs and iMovie, anyone can put together something with a semblance of polish.

My problem with The Barista is its one of these projects which is similar to a joke... a long- winded joke, which, does have a punchline.

The question is, whether-or-not the build-up to the punchline is worth the drawn-out preamble to it.

As the synopsis of The Barista says, the barista of the title may, or may not have a dark secret.

Okay.

The problem here, is once you remove the opening, credits and all, and the end - credits, as well, you're left with a 'joke' which is played out over approximately 5-6minutes.

Once the viewer understands what the 'secret' may-or-may not be (15 seconds), I really think this is nothing more than a big, BIG yawn.

There's a terrific short, named Bambi Meets Godzilla. If you've never heard of, or seen it. You should look for it, I believe it's probably on YouTube.

It's animated, and the whole film is perhaps a minute.

It begins with a shot of the titular Bambi, eating grass, as the title appears, it gives way to the opening credits - the whole time, Bambi's just chomping on the grass. ; 'idea conceived by...,' Gpdzilla originally designed by...' And on, and on.

This goes on for perhaps 30 seconds.

When the opening credits do end, a giant Godzilla-foot comes slamming down on top of Bambi, and, all that's left are four splayed deer legs protruding out from under Godzilla's foot.

After this, the credits role - again; 'the end,' and then the perfunctory 'drawn by,' etc. credits role.

Here, they realised the build-up,to the joke was important, but, they also knew not to go on SO along, and, even though this film is very well-known, and well-liked (and deservedly so), it's designed so the viewer starts to get antsy with the length of the opening credits - and as I said; the whole film is under a minute.

Now, compare Bambi Meets Godzilla - a big build-up for a quick punch-line, to The Barista - also a big build-up to a quick punchline, but, the interminable length of The Barista is way, way too long.

As for Mr. Williamson, he's not bad - not terrible, but, still, I do t see anything which separates him from a plethora of '25-35 y.o. white males' (a quick bit about me; I DO work in the legit film business - 'legit' being film and television work, and that's how we look at ALL actors; in partitioned groups. There's not enough there of Mr. Williamson to say he's memorable, but, he does have a pm engaging personality.

As for the other roles, I believe the actress who's at the register is Amanda fuller, and I must say - even though she's on-camera for probably under 30secs in total, I liked her. The actor who's the customer - who instigates this whole thing - Morgan Brown (I DESPISE hyphenated names, and 3-named people. Trying to 'separate' oneself from the crowd should be your abilities, NOT a gimmick - NOT your name), in a way, I feel bad for him, because, he's stuck doing variation upon variation of the same build-up, and has to (needlessly) do this for almost the entire length!

He is a bit Paul Giamatti-ish, in his appearance here, and, though I credit him for being stuck doing a thankless drone, I wish I'd seen him do more than just the same one-note shtick.

I think the 'blame' for my dislike of this goes to the behind-the-camera people, who are a little too impressed with what they felt would be a 'har-har,' funny ... with-a-twist (sorry - no spoilers), but, couldn't stop just going on-and-on, rather than just edit this down to perhaps 1.30.

There's MANY actors (I know quite a few), who are such egomaniacs, they count the number of lines they have, and compare it to others in the cast, and get in hissy fits, if they feel they should get 'more lines.'

The ones I like and respect - as well as many others in the business - are the ones, however, who've no problem surrounding themselves with talented co-stars, because they u dress down its not just one 'ingredient' which makes a good meal, great. It's a combination- and how they're put-together.

When one's sure of themselves, they don't need to be built-up with adjectives, I.e., 'most lines, biggest trailer, most screen-time,' etc. They're secure enough to allow others to work, and sure enough to know it's not the length, as much as how good the end-result will be.


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