November 10th, 2006

Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

FLiFF Short Subject: "Avatar" - the Best short subject of the festival

“Avatar” is the best short subject of the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival..

Within fifteen full minutes, Spanish director/writer Lluis Quilez tells a complete story with a clear beginning, middle and ending. With shades of O. Henry and Edgar Allen Poe, “Avatar” features the dark relationship between a suicidal patient and his caregiver during morning absolutions. “Avatar” redefines the term “passive aggressive” with Gothic overtures.

Avoiding the manic editing and compressing too many eccentric characters, Quilez understands pacing and letting the visuals support his gothic vision. The shocking ending pays off because of the subtle mise en scence that leads up to “Avatar's” conclusion.

Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

FLiFF Short subject: "The Shovel" digs deep

A man borrows his Paul Mullon's shovel in the middle of the night to dig a hole. When Mullon (David Strathairn) questions his neighbor's motives, the crabby neighbor becomes defensive. The next morning, the shovel is returned, but the crabby neighbor disappears.

Writer/Director Nick Childs does a fine job presenting a 15 minute film with a surprising plot twist that does not feel rushed.

Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

FLiFF Short Subject: "Civil Wars" - a double entendre title

Part “The Wicker Man” and part C.S Forrester's “A Passage to India,” “Civil Wars” could make for a fascinating full length motion picture. Writer/director C.C. Webster presents a disturbing feature about a middle school field trip to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. With the sight of the bloodiest battle on United States soil as a backdrop, “Civil Wars” contrasts the callowness of youth that does not understand the lessons of war.

“Civil Wars” features a clique of four middle school girls and a dorky boy. Dealing with issues of peer pressure and acceptance, the audience is presented with the sociopath behavior that is painful, but honest. Cruel, but truthful study of middle school girl cliques.

Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

FLiFF Short Subject: "Last Night" defines the six minute monologue

“Last Night” is a six minute monologue about a woman and her lovers. Edited during episodes of sex with different partners, the climax opens the door to self discover for the leading lady, Rose Perkins.

“Last Night” is artful because director Scott Patch knows when to stop. The editing is both clever and energetic with carefully spliced sight gags. Yet director Scott Patch is wise enough to slow things down to reveal the moral of his story. Kudos.