Damn Fine Dining (2014)

| Short, Comedy
Jim and Ted, two over-competitive, delusional, egotists, lock horns over dinner in a testosterone fuelled battle of one-upmanship.


Trace Crawford (based on characters created by), David McLean


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Credited cast:
Murray Clapham Murray Clapham ... George
Sam Dugmore Sam Dugmore ... Ted
Chiara Gizzi ... Helen
David McLean David McLean ... Jim


Jim and Ted, two over-competitive, delusional, egotists, lock horns over dinner in a testosterone fuelled battle of one-upmanship.

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Short | Comedy




Australia | USA



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Fun in some ways, but rather one-joke affair which doesn't provide a strong narrative or punch-line
5 November 2015 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

An exclusive and expensive restaurant is the place where two supposedly successful company men bump into one another. Regardless of their realities, the two men rise up in a testosterone fuelled attempt to outdo and belittle one another – in a gentlemanly way of course.

Not being a part of the 1% I do of course take a certain pleasure in seeing mockery made of those climbing that corporate money pole, which is essentially what this film does. The two characters are as boorish and egotistical as you like, and even though it is clear to the viewer than at least one of them is living a lie, they exchange with back and forwards that plays out like Monty Python's Four Yorkshiremen skit but in reverse. As a base idea it is a nice one, and the caricatures are played out with broad enthusiasm by both the actors, which is quite pleasing in and of itself. Technically this is well captured in a very nice Sydney restaurant, and the piece does look good and have energy.

Unfortunately it didn't have the bite it needed, and as a story it doesn't really have a punch-line – which is not an ideal situation for a short which is essentially one long sketch; it really needed a stronger ending. The opening nod to the "bad news", and the way it is mentioned again later, suggests we will have a closure to a narrative, while the rest of the material suggests it will be more of a punch- line – I'm not sure it really delivered on either in a good way. It is still worth a look for the fun way it presents these two characters, and the comical but yet oh so believable way they present themselves, but I did hope for a stronger short to be there at the end.

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