Alexander, a boy who has been raised in a sequestered commune, finds that his increasing unwillingness to fall in line puts him on a collision course with Gregori, the society's charismatic and domineering leader.
Every night, a mysterious woman wearing a burka taunts police officers patrolling the projects. Meanwhile, Vince, a former street legend, must face his demons and avoid falling off of the wagon, and back into the streets...
Not sure the central narrative event works but the sense of claustrophobic frustration is very well done
The basic description of this short is that the crew of a submarine have become savages to a point – losing contact with social norms and behaviour. Oleg is not above this himself, although he tries to be so. We join the crew of the submarine as we head into an event which will confirm this detachment and test Oleg.
I have watched this film twice now because I had heard very good things about it – with one person known for their consumption of short films saying it was one of the best he had ever seen. I watched it the twice because I did not see this – and I'm sure I will come back to it because it does have plenty of good about it. To speak of this, the film does an excellent job of conveying the sense of claustrophobia , and showing us the impact it has on the crew – their frustration, their lack of release, their frayed patience with one another. It does this while shooting inside a real submarine (the name is on the credits at the end) and yet doing it in a way that looks very cinematic – captured on film and visually very crisp, cold but yet never ugly. The soundtrack is used sparingly and when it is used it does conjure up the tribal, the sense of something building, and this works.
What didn't work for me was how much the film asked me to do in terms of going with it and the central scenario. I didn't really buy the odds of finding the woman the way they did, and I didn't buy the fact that the crew would pretty much morally all be where they supposedly are – even Oleg only really seems to take exception as he does because he has already suffered the violation of his own woman that day (sort of). The extent of the proposed act didn't seem to be totally sold by what had gone before either and it lost me in what I perceived as a jump.
The acting is convincing; I felt uncomfortable around these types and their lack of any social conformity apart from that which they defined themselves. This all sat well with the delivery of the camera and crew which, as I said, is engaging in how well it conveys the lack of space and air – but the narrative device at the core seemed a jump, stretching my ability and willingness to go with it. I will try it again due to the praise of others, but for me the groundwork was not strong enough for the extremity of the central scenario.
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