A natural and unobtrusive moment on a rainy street corner
On a rainy street corner in Los Angeles, two groups of two young men perform a dance off on either side of the street. This short film is pretty simple and I enjoyed it more for that. It is quite a candid piece as the film sits off at a distance, observing what is happening rather than making the camera part of what is happening (by way of edits, cutting or set-up shots). The beat is also quite background and the feeling of watching something natural that just happens on a street corner on a fairly miserable grey day makes this little short film work.
So I'm not sure why my criticism of it is that it didn't try a bit harder. Part of me did want a bit more choreography in the routine of the four men; they are very talented and have moves that even at my most limber I could not have pulled off. Also I sort of wanted more of a build to events – and I was half expecting the action to build onto the road itself. Likewise the beat is fairly pedestrian and I'm sure someone could easily have pulled something heavier together for Erin Lale. But then this would have been a choreographed music video – and I guess if you want people dancing on a rainy street to a good beat then the better "short" is No Diggity by Blackstreet (showing my age a little there).
So, no, my hesitations about these things are because it is not what I thought it could be – but if it were that it would be a different film altogether and not have the merit that it does have. This merit is a great natural feel and a sense of just observing this on a street as you stand off at a distance – the beats don't overwhelm, the camera doesn't overwhelm and choreography doesn't detract from how natural and normal it feels for the four dancers. The end result is a pleasingly natural and unobtrusive moment captured on a corner as you go somewhere else.
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