Poor Scholars Short Film Suite

TerryTateBY TROY PHILLIPS

Short films are a valuable part of film culture but are often overlooked in favor of their longer, larger budget counterparts. Alas, Poor Scholars’ Troy Phillips is here to give you a few works of amateur film that are certifiably worth their compact running time.

After scouring the Internet last night, I’ve procured four solid short films that will leave you in stitches or tears, or perhaps both if they so choose. Scroll on for a free suite (sounds swanky, doesn’t it?) of short films that I have gathered in honor of this Movie Friday at Poor Scholars. Also, bear in mind that this sort of material can be offbeat and allegorical at times, so be prepared to possibly rehash and dissect what you’ve just seen.

Terry Tate Office Linebacker

From the writer-director of Dodgeball comes this hilarious four-minute short about an office who decides to hire a retired NFL linebacker to enforce company policy. This mockumentary style clip is easy viewing that delivers a lot of bang for its’ buck while maintaining an upper echelon cinematic style that keeps this film above amateurish YouTube quality. Might we be getting a sneak preview into the atmosphere in Bristol now that Ray Lewis is working at ESPN?

The Wedding

I didn’t have high hopes for this film going in, but I just couldn’t bring myself to click away from the beautifully simplified animation and sad, measured tone of the narrator, who attends is the only attendee at his estranged fathers’ wedding on a small boat. I love the scene at the end when the journal is thrown into the water with the hopes of being drowned in the ocean but then is reeled back onto the boat after it floats atop the water untouched. Sometimes its hard not to feel that your actions have no weight and merely sit above the surface, never making a real indentation on the world.

The Parlor

A group of people sit around a lobby area and discuss personal and seemingly random events. From the beginning, you can tell that something isn’t right. How long will it take you to figure out what’s really going on? This film is an enjoyable mental exercise as you race against the clock to figure out the twist before it is revealed, and then you’re given an added twist before the closing credits as an added bonus.  Also, be sure to catch this great bit of dialogue;

Person 1:”Irregardless isn’t even a word.”

Person 2: “Yeah it is, it means without lack of regard.”

Between You and Me

A man saves a woman from being raped in an urban setting and then also returns the camera she dropped the next day. The cool part about this film is that it made no use of a video camera; over 2000 still photos were edited together to create the illusion of movement and create a serviceable short story. Some of the sound effects are cheesy, but it’s still a testament to the filmmakers that only a few grunts were needed to convey the entire message.

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