REVIEW: American Storage [2006]

americanstorage01

“I maintain it myself” It’s good to have friends in high places, but it’s better to have the chops to warrant their help. This is the life of Andrew Jay Cohen and Brendan O’Brien, production assistants on Anchorman and The 40 Year Old Virgin respectively who used their relationship with Judd Apatow and his troupe […]

BIJFF14 REVIEW: Blue Tattoo [2014]

bluetattoo01

“Religion is a big deal with her, but she has a problem with God” Despite acknowledging it’s a well-made film, I was disappointed by Oscar-winning short The Lady in Number 6 because of its subject’s attitude towards surviving the Holocaust. Her unique concentration camp circumstances inexplicably allowed her to let the experience wash away so […]

REVIEW: Almost Home [2014]

almosthome01

“Next!” I’m not really sure what Dreamworks is doing, but the existence of Almost Home rubs me the wrong way. A four-minute short shown before Mr. Peabody and Sherman—replacing the Gary Trousdale helmed Rocky and Bullwinkle piece that was inexplicably removed—I thought it was mildly humorous in a charmingly prolonged gag sort of way. But […]

REVIEW: Bottle Rocket [1994]

bottlerocket1994a

“It has the logic of a dream” The career of writer/director Wes Anderson begins with his University of Texas at Austin buddy Owen Wilson and their 13-minute short film Bottle Rocket. Screened at the 1994 Sundance Film Festival, it tells the story of two friends and their aspiration towards crime. Dignan (Owen) and Anthony (Luke […]

REVIEW: Party Central [2014]

partycentral01

“Operation Party Central is a go” Turning to frat house humor for Monsters University was to me the largest misstep in Pixar Animation’s history. It took one of the studio’s most original worlds and made it into a gag to be blindly consumed by fans of Monsters Inc.‘s heart only to scratch their heads wondering […]

REVIEW: Broken [2013]

broken-short01

“Nice shot” A Frenchman who has been working as an assistant director in Hollywood since 2009, Mathieu Turi is leveraging his experiences into a budding career as an original filmmaker too. His second short entitled Broken is a visually arduous movie that takes place almost entirely inside a stuck elevator trapping two strangers together: English-speaking […]

REVIEW: Karama Has No Walls [2013]

karamahasnowalls

“Sit-in! Sit-in! Until the regime is toppled!” The last words Anwar Al-Muaati spoke to his father upon leaving for “Change Square” in Sana’a, Yemen were, “If you tell me I can’t go and all the other fathers tell their sons the same, who will fight the revolution?” That’s a powerful sentiment of patriotism, freedom, and […]

REVIEW: The Lady In Number 6 [2013]

ladyatnumber6

“Calmness is strength” Despite starting with a smile watching 109-year old Alice Herz Sommer playing classical music on her piano, we know there will be more to The Lady In Number 6 than simply learning how beloved she is to those in her building woken at 10am to the sounds of Chopin and Bach. It’s […]

REVIEW: Facing Fear [2013]

facingfear

“I don’t know if I could forgive somebody the way he’s been able to forgive me” While it may be a “talking head” documentary, Jason Cohen‘s Oscar nominated short Facing Fear is anything but boring or static. It’s a story about two men who grew up in fear of the unknown, the different. Matthew Boger […]

REVIEW: Cavedigger [2013]

cavedigger

“I’m a digger of caves and a piler of rocks” Sculptor Ra Paulette is an amazing artist. His philosophical manifesto for space and the metaphor of interior versus exterior is well-put and meticulously brought to life through malleable sandstone to create unimaginable beauty in a collision of Mother Nature and mankind’s mark as builder. I […]

REVIEW: Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall [2013]

prisonterminal

“I’ll get out of here one of these days. In a box.” Born George William, PFC “Jack” Hall served four years in the military during WWII, was a POW, and ultimately found his way back home. Unable to shake what he saw and did in war, the feeling to kill anyone who crossed him remained. […]