As part of the Florida Film Festival, four short film programs will be presented over the next ten days. The first short program, subtitled "Perfect Day," includes seven shorts that represent a variety of genres. Shorts are often a mixed bag, but for the most part this particular batch are successful.
Fool's Day opens the program, and demonstrates what happens when an elementary class pulls an April Fool's joke on their teacher and it goes horribly wrong. The child actors are all cute and endearing, and the premise is amusing (if dark). Might have worked better as a midnight short, but very funny.
Cash for Gold is almost a perfect short: brief, but tells a complete story in just a few minutes. A woman enters a pawn shop to sell some jewelry and she and the clerk make an unexpected connection. Well acted and not overwritten.
The Bravest, the Boldest tells a powerful story but suffers from some rather on the nose writing. Two soldiers come to a housing project to inform a woman her son has died in Afghanistan. The portrayal of the mother is heartbreaking, and even minor characters are well drawn.
ZZZZZZZ is a rather avant garde piece that shows two characters either dreaming or sleepwalking their way around New York. The film itself is rather repetitive, but the twist ending is clever enough to warrant a look.
The Immaculate Reception is a charming period piece/coming of age story about a teenager in Pittsburgh who chooses a girl over football and misses what is arguably the greatest play in football history. The grainy film stock adds a 70's authenticity.
Milk and Blood, an offering from Iceland, aims to shock but really didn't do anything for me, in a story about a young man who has no interest in following in his father's footsteps as a dairy farmer. Beautiful scenery can't dispel the boredom.
Setup, Punch stars Elijah Wood as a talented standup comedian who decides to propose to his girlfriend during his routine. I won't dream of spoiling what happens, just in case anyone has the chance to see this one. Wood is more Frodo than serial killer in this one.