Film Review: STUPID SMARTPHONE THERAPY, Germany, Experimental

An inversion on the classic “millenials are addicted to their phone” cliche, STUPID SMARTPHONE THERAPY turns the trope on its head and tells the story of a young German girl going on vacation to Toronto with her father. But the vacation is soured by her father’s inability to look away from his phone.

A humorous bit of social commentary, STUPID SMARTPHONE THERAPY breaks open and examines are dependency on technology, while also making statements about  some of the social constructs and assumptions we walk around with everyday. Our heroine is quirky and loveable, her wit and charm are infectiously entertaining. The film’s style makes a thought-provoking and slightly absurdist comedy that the whole family can enjoy. Well done, director Garmamine Sideau!

Review by Kierston Drier

PLAYED at the January 2018 EUROPEAN Film Festival.

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STUPID SMARTPHONE THERAPY, 4min., Germany, Experimental
Directed by Garmamie SideauThe social impacts of various technological innovations are redefining the role of human relationships and communication in a growing globally connected and diverse digital world. Meet Serena, a biracial German teenager on a dream vacation to Canada with Henok, her smartphone addicted workaholic father. Serena’s dream vacation is quickly tuned into a puzzling and challenging nightmare of personal conflicts involving smartphones, identity, belonging and jiujitsu.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!


Music Video Review: KILLING US SOFTLY (Australia)

A wide reaching music video filled to bursting with social commentary and vivid visual metaphor, KILLING US SOFTLY holds nothing back with it’s musical up-front approach to world issues.

From racism, to health care, from corporate greed to social injustice, KILLING US SOFTLY throws an unapologetic light on the areas of our world many of us wish didn’t exist. Colorful and bright with rapid-fire editing creates the illusion of walking through a socially conscious funhouse of a societal extremes.

Although at times the content may see jarring, KILLING US SOFTLY makes its’ point with rhythm, style and a musical accessibility that makes it a worthwhile investment for both music and cinema. A funky framework for many first world criticisms, but a film both enjoyable and meaningful, nonetheless.


Short Film played at the EXPERIMENTAL FEEDBACK Film Festival in December 2017

Review by Kierston Drier

KILLING US SOFTLY, 5min., Australia, Music Video
Directed by Emilie BoyardA mirror held up to humanity – it points out our ugliest, greediest and most idiotic ways. It is a chant, a protest rally, a wake up call to the people, and a reminder that we still have the power to take back what they are taking from us

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Film Review: YOU (Portugal)

 An experimental with gripping intensity and breathtaking visuals, YOU, directed by Hugo Pinto, is a compelling emotional piece about a tumultuous and passionate love story. Told from the male’s perspective, two lovers meet in a find love, while battling within themselves and the worlds around them.

Told with no character dialogue, but exceptional interpretive dance, our heroes move through, (often literally) gravity defying feats of life. Together they unravel the intense highs and lows of love. We follow our male protagonist as he rides a metaphorical emotional roller coaster, yet displays it literally through his dance with his partner.

Excellent camera work accompanies this intense story and the rapid fire editing and creative use of day and night as well as lightness and darkness mean that YOU is an excellent well composed film. It sweeps the audience up with it- for a few magical minutes, you are not watching a film- you are watching passion.


Short Film played at the EXPERIMENTAL FEEDBACK Film Festival in December 2017

Review by Kierston Drier

YOU, 10min., Portugal, Experimental
Directed by Hugo PintoY0U is a love story, that happens in a moment in wich the last thing you want to do is to fall in love, but falling in love is probally the only way you have to go on with your live.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Movie Review: A SPACE GOD APPEARS (USA, Experimental)

Played at the July 2017 Experimental Short Film Festival

A SPACE GOD APPEARS, 10min, USA, Experimental
Directed by Grayson ConverseCareening through the universe, pistols blazing, neutron drive pulsing, Spooky Mansion and Tino Drima spread their Space Rock. Follow these bands in this short film about Space, God, Hope and Music. One of the most important stories ever told.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

This unique and original work unlike many films- experimental or not- it showcases two different real-life bands facing off musically within the confines of a larger-the-life short film. In the depths of space Spooky Mansion and Tino Drima are on two rival space ships- about to board and fight one another.

Laced with vintage pop-culture references and famous sci-fi callbacks to well loved shows, A SPACE GOD APPEARS lovingly satirized science fiction classics while revitalizing the tropes. Our rival bands compose their film with a colleague of cultural icons including visual references to various 1980’s music and media.

The film may be read as over-the-top by some viewers, but what is admirable about A SPACE GOD APPEARS is its bravery and unflinching choice to own it’s genre. Perhaps most unique, and authentic about this cinematic piece is its originality. The two bands that act as rivals on their space voyage are real life musical bands that have played together in real life.

A fresh twist on media favorites, and revitalizing way to reclaim the classics, A SPACE GOD APPEARS is a adventure for your cinematic sense and a true joy to watch.

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Movie Review: DON’T LET THE BASTARDS GRIND YOU DOWN (UK, Experimental)

Played at the July 2017 Experimental Short Film Festival

Directed by Michelle Bailey

A young girl girl searches for a safe haven in an urban landscape and finds solace in her own creative expression.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Terrifyingly authentic and yet beautifully abstract, DON’T LET THE BASTARDS GRIND YOU DOWN follows a young woman fleeing the endless cycle of her abusive partnership. She flees down a street while a cycle of his verbal abuse replays over and over in her head.

Once she reaches a rooftop overlooking a deadly drop to the street below, she defies the expectation by bursting into a passionate and emotionally charged dance piece.

Sharp, dramatic, cathartic and intense, DON’T LET THE BASTARDS GRIND YOU DOWN is a piece about finding your own freedom. Our heroine is an exceptional dancer and cinematic performer, and our story, though simply, is nevertheless incredibly emotive and effective.

A piece worth watching if you are a fan of dance cinema, an appreciator of strong dramatic pieces or a lover a fine cinema, you will find something to enjoy in this work. It’s movement will surely move you.

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Movie Review: REQUEMBARREN (Spain, Experimental)

Played at the July 2017 Experimental Short Film Festival

REQUEMBARREN, 16min, Spain, Experimental
Directed by Roman Rubert Bernat 

Beatrice is a young woman who leaves home to look for Requembarren. After listening to the sad man, to the profaner, and to the incestuous man, she reflects on what happens to her on the journey.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

This short, highly metaphorical experimental piece, coming to use from Spain and directed by Roman Rubert Bernat, follows the story of a young woman, given a map by her parents and sent out in the world. The world, however, is dangerous, horrifying and wildly unpredictable. Our heroine, much like any on an epic quest, battles feat after feat, meeting stranger after stranger in increasingly periciliary circumstances.

Shot in black and white with keen attention to detail and style, this is a piece with truly admirable cinematic qualities. Thickly laced with fairy tale elements REQUEMBARREN asks its’ audience to examine its meaning from multiple angles; it may be a piece about the passage between life and death, or the link between heaven and hell, or between fairy reality and fantasy.

Regardless of the meaning intended by the creator, there is something lush and gorgeous behind this work of art- with special acknowledgment going to the various rich locations of shooting and the filters used to give brightness to the piece. A worthy watch indeed.

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Movie Review: STRANGE BEASTS (UK, Experimental)

Played at the July 2017 Experimental Short Film Festival

STRANGE BEASTS, 5min, UK, Experimental
Directed by Magali Barbe

‘Strange Beasts’ is an augmented reality game. It allows you to create and grow your own ‘pet’. How far can it go?

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

A bright, authentic and chillingly vibrant piece of speculative fiction, STRANGE BEASTS follows a software and game developer on his new groundbreaking game. One where you create and care for a digital pet. The catch? The game exists in a device embedded in your eye.

Our hero is loveable, bright, energetic and trusting. The game looks authentic, dazzling and instantly addictive. As a film the colors, graphics and visuals are flawless. The film is a master of attention to detail.

But what sets this film apart is its believability, and its gut wrenching twist. Without spoiling this remarkable ending- this film hits frighteningly close to home.

With this only a five-minutes-in-the-future kind of science fiction, the audience is hit with the sudden realization that this type of technology already exists, and the we are not watching a film about what could be, but what will be.

STRANGE BEASTS will haunt you, with its disarmingly charming approach to the future, and send a chill up your spine when it ends.

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