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Somebody Someone Shoehorn With Teeth

54 Reviews

Reviews

Operation Cheese roll

This was a nice-looking, largely entertaining film, but the story needed some polishing. While it was enjoyable, a lack of definition of the characters, and of their motivations distracted from the story. The victim of the carefully planned heist was the most developed character, but even most of the traits he was assigned fell by the wayside in order to throw a spanner in the works of the thieves, with no real explanation. The planning scenes were nicely constructed, but a lack of explanation about the contest (why it was important to them, why they needed this particular recipe, etc.) detracted from the general experience. All in all, a fun, visually polished film, even if the story was a little rough around the edges. Rock on, guys!

Embers of the Past

First off, this is a really good-looking film. Nice genre touches (especially in the 30 second intro), and just generally great style. Story-wise, however, it was less consistent. Great use of genre tropes, often funny dialog, and nice acting for the most part, but I felt that the plot lacked some substance, and was, to some degree, just going through the motions of the genre. All in all, quite a polished film stylistically, but a little disappointing in the story department. You guys rock though.

All Roads Must Go Somewhere

I am a little bit in love with this movie. Shockingly witty, nicely paced, and impeccably acted. You guys rock my socks off. While this kind of genre subversion is obvious and somewhat played out (I've done it before, and I'm not proud of the results), this film really pulled it off. There were a few technical issues throughout, and it was shot fairly blandly, but it didn't detract too much. Wonderful comedic timing shown by many throughout the film (particularly the main guy, and the obviously brilliant road-makers), and a nice variety of characters and gags meant that this film was a delight to watch. You guys are... win.

The Fever

A nice, if ultimately unsatisfying film about a man afflicted with Disco Fever, and the effect that it has on those around him. This film's premise is funny, but this film didn't develop it sufficiently for it to really draw the audience in. For the most part, it ended up really being about a guy who involuntarily throws things occasionally. It was frequently funny, but lost some momentum towards the end, as it tried to become more serious. The story didn't really have the scope necessary to make me really care about the characters. There were some nice performance, particularly by the girlfriend character, but ultimately, the premise didn't sustain the film for me. This is a very able team, and as always, I look forward to their future entries. Stay awesome, guys.

Mitchell Henderson

Subtlety is an attribute often missing from 48hour films, but these guys deployed it to great effect, creating a situation populated with characters we cared about, and shooting it with beauty and confidence. The story was effective, sufficiently simple, and engaging. The acting was very nicely played, and the cinematography was satisfying and never boring, which can be a particular concern with this genre. These guys are definitely ones to watch.

Mysterious Girl

I don't really have a lot to add to Bone In My Beard's review, which I think is a very considered, eloquent appraisal of this film, but I feel like I should say something. I feel infinitely under-qualified to comment at all about a film of this caliber, but I shall do it anyway. As ever, a tight, beautiful production. Visually polished (that is an understatement), and a lean, effecting story. My problems with the film are exactly that: my problems. When watching the film, I had a faint sense that it was *too* lean and *too* effecting; I had a looming feeling that it was acutely aware of what judges look for in this competition. That is obviously not a very valid complaint about a film, but it did feel to me somewhat calculated, and that prevented me from becoming truly invested in the story. Don't get me wrong, I am not a "too soon"-er about the earthquake, but its inclusion in the story felt almost emotionally manipulative. Neither am I one to resent pros in the competition. What is it if not a celebration of ability? However, something about this short left me cold, and I'm fairly certain it has something to do with the emotional beats in the film being too baldly emotional. As mentioned above, I feel very uncomfortable speaking negatively about a film of such obvious quality and beauty (of the kind which I could only hope to ever create myself), but for me, this film left me unsatisfied. Anyway, enough waffling. May the Linemen continue to let beauty flow forth from their brainholes!

The Gardener

Easily the most beautiful film of the night, and possibly of the city for the competition. Wonderful acting by the young girl, visually stunning, and altogether arresting. The only let downs in an otherwise wonderfully executed film were the man's delivery of the line, and the ending, which was a minor disappointment. Regardless of those minor quibbles, there is little doubt that this will feature heavily on city finals night.

Skit

A decently-produced film with a confusing tone, and a cheap twist. Technically speaking, this film was fairly proficient, and visually economical, but this was let down by a weak story, and a muddled tone. The main body of the film didn't do enough to communicate the seriousness that it intended, and the twist, while nicely executed visually, felt neither emotionally earned, nor narratively original. There is clearly a lot of creativity on this team, but I would like to see them focus on making something more tonally consistent, and less one-dimensional. Keep it up, guys.

Time Freeze

The scene we see in this film is, quite simply, stunning, but in order to really succeed, this need some extra narrative. With the addition of a few, short surrounding scenes, perhaps setting the characters up slightly more, this scene could have been the centerpiece of a winning film, but unfortunately, as it stands, it is just too slight to become fully invested it. None of that is to diminish what Mosquito has created here: a beautiful scene, with the beauty and comedic poise that we've come to expect from this wonderful team.

Psyche

A competently-produced film, but it fails to develop the atmosphere necessary for a horror film, and the ending packs little punch. Despite that, highlights included the lead performance, and very nice handling of the reveal with the box (even if it was immediately obvious what was going on there). I predict an excellent film from these guys next year. Keep it up, guys.

Cut It Out

As a gory, creepy film, this largely succeeds, but the plot is a little muddled. Very, very nice practical effects, and, as mentioned in another review, great use of the surgery video in the background. Coathanger scene was wonderfully shocking. The ending was little too morbidly humorous compared with the rest of the film, but this team very effectively channeled their assigned genre.

The Row

This team achieved a lot with their visuals, but this was let down by disappointing audio, and weak lyrics. This was a very, very nice looking film (my notes say "Lighting like a boss"), and was well-shot. Only quibble with the visuals would be the lack of feeling of motion of the vehicle during the car ride. Unfortunately, the lyrics of the songs lacked humour, or emotional impact. The accents of the characters, too, were inconsistent. The audio during the singing was very tinny, and often difficult to understand. In future, it would be nice to see the rest of the team's aspects match the high quality of their visual design.

Mitchell Henderson

Subtlety is an attribute often missing from 48hour films, but these guys deployed it to great effect, creating a situation populated with characters we cared about, and shooting it with beauty and confidence. The story was effective, sufficiently simple, and engaging. The acting was very nicely played, and the cinematography was satisfying and never boring, which can be a particular concern with this genre. These guys are definitely ones to watch.

Embers of the Past

First off, this is a really good-looking film. Nice genre touches (especially in the 30 second intro), and just generally great style. Story-wise, however, it was less consistent. Great use of genre tropes, often funny dialog, and nice acting for the most part, but I felt that the plot lacked some substance, and was, to some degree, just going through the motions of the genre. All in all, quite a polished film stylistically, but a little disappointing in the story department. You guys rock though.

NETWORK

A competent film, visually, with a twist which, while fairly obvious, and largely without motivation, works surprisingly well. Nice development of atmosphere, even if the computer interfaces were of an inconsistent standard (some were very nice). A nice, subtle lead performance, and visceral action. As mentioned in another review, the story is more in the vein of a thriller than a horror, but the atmosphere is sufficiently creepy. Aside from a few minor audio issues, a nice film. Make more movies, dudes!

A Mile In His Shoes

While there are some flaws with this movie, such as it being merely sufficient technically, there are a lot of things to like about this movie. First of all, I admire the decision not to explain the switch. While it didn't entirely work, not getting into the explanation for it gave the film a nice sense of space around what happened to the characters once they had switched bodies. While the plot is a little flabby, and hard to care about sometimes, that is redeemed by some surprisingly nice acting, and a great use of the line and freeze frame at the end of the film. Next year, you better make something even cooler.

Shelfman

I would like to begin somewhat off-topic by declaring my secret love for EFG's film from last year. Despite shockingly poor audio, video, and breast-authenticity, it had a shaggy charm which I could not escape. This year, they have vastly improved the quality of their technical side, as well as improving on the accessibility of their humour. 'Shelfman' features an often very funny script, nicely surreal moments, and some good acting. There is the occasional feeling that they are trying really hard to be silly/funny, but this doesn't diminish their film too much. If you keep improving at this rate, next year very well may be your year! Go forth and rock, dudes.

Chatter

This film blew my mind. Having seen it twice now (it was shown in the first heat, in order for some team members to be able to see it on the big screen before traveling overseas), I can attest to its strength, in every respect. This film has visual, editing, acting and story chops in equally overflowing supply, and was, quite simply, a joy to watch. Having seen all of the films from Dunedin this year, this is the one that I became the most invested in, in both a story sense, and with its place in the competition. There are some other very strong films in Dunedin this year, but this is the one I *like* the most, and I hope that it is recognised appropriately, come City Finals time, and with any luck, national finals time.