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The Risk Not Taken (2011)

In a strange, but wonderful world a creature envisions the fatal outcome of a potential decision and is therefore granted a chance to alter future events.

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"The Risk not Taken" is a story about making the right decisions. Can one calculate the inherent risks of imminent decisions and take full responsibility for their outcome? Should one be allowed to make decisions of this magnitude for others? With the symbolic omnipotent sphere, the main character holds the world's fate in his hands. The decision is his whether to use this power to improve life for many, yet at the same time might risk a catastrophe, or to separate himself from this power, and take the safer, more long lasting path. As he ponders and envisions the possible risks involved if he were to use the power, as well as what he would lose if he made the wrong decision, symbolized by the woman and child, he decides against this burden of power and lets go of the power and lets the sphere fall so as not to be tempted to change his mind. Written by Anonymous

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surrealism | sacrifice | abstract | See All (3) »


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28 October 2011 (Germany)  »

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2.35 : 1
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Technically impressive, visually engaging but the soundtrack promises more than the content delivers
23 June 2014 | by See all my reviews

After watching this film I noticed that the plot summary posted on this IMDb page is more of a discussion on the plot than actually just saying the plot. There is good reason for this since for most if not all the film, the viewer may not be fully aware of what is going on. We join a human figure on a shore; he teleports to a place of power where he recovers an orb which appears to give him power and from there he has to make decisions regarding it. The details of these decisions I'll come back to, because it is better to start with the strengths of this short, which are undoubtedly technical.

This short was made using the open source software Blender, which is one I have now seen used several times on short films – some good, some not so good. As with many of them, technically the film is very impressive, with great creations and movement throughout. Visually it is very engaging, the characters and landscapes are familiar but yet creative and the images are interesting in the small detail but also in the broader scope. The problems come when it gets down to what the film is doing in terms of narrative. It is fair to say that it is not a 'go from A to C via B' plot, and this is not a problem for me, however it is an issue where it seems to leave you entirely without help to figure it out.

The soundtrack clearly believes that we are being shown the most profound and touching thing that we may have ever seen; it leaves the viewer in no doubt that we should be moved by it and engaged by the epic scale of the events we are seeing – since the music belts out and guides in this way. The material and the delivery of it doesn't back this up though, the viewer is really given little to help them. I am totally fine with people saying 'you didn't get it', because I didn't, but for me it is the film that doesn't do enough to give access to the substance, not that it did a great job and I just missed it. Technically it is very impressive, but for all the signposting that the score does, I would have liked a bit more support from the substance of the film to appreciate what it is doing while it looks so good doing it.


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