Short Film Review #33

Responding to the work of Belarus Free Theatre, Connection is part of the continuing short film work that the Young Vic are producing in collaboration with the Guardian in response to their theatrical work. Written by Nicolai Khalezin and Laura Wade, it features Khalezin and Jude Law playing thinly veiled versions of themselves, both stuck at a London airport but for very different reasons. It’s an engaging, moving little tale and if the parallels that are drawn between the pair stick in the craw a little, Law’s ongoing work with BFT ought to silence any naysayers.

Another of the Young Vic/Guardian films is this Chiwetel Ejiofor short, which arose from the experiences of his starring in A Season in the Congo last summer. Ejiofor is genuinely hot property now as his performance in 12 Years A Slave has now been rewarded with an Oscar nomination but whether an Academy Award ends up on his shelf or not, his talent as a film-maker is no question here. Columbite Tantalite explores how the exploitation of the mineral coltan touches all of us, not least the Congolese from whom it is extracted, the film touches on the inter-connectivity of the world and how we’re all complicit in the murkiness around it no matter how far in time or space.

Flann O’Brien’s The Martyr’s Crown is a rather typical Irish short – set in a pub, full of storytelling and blarney. It’s well done though not particularly essential inthe end.

A rather delicately lovely thing – Vanessa Caswill and Jenefer Hughes’ film Magpie is about how even the most difficult times in life can be worked through with a little love, light and friendship. It looks beautiful, is well written and features cameos from Adrian Scarborough as a hapless delivery man and Tom Riley in a Batman costume. Nice 😉 

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