Outfest 2008: Shorts Program - Rough & Ready

OUTFEST 2008 SHORTS PROGRAM: ROUGH & READY

For a Relationship is a motion picture piece. Our narrator clicks through, flash forwarding through still images. It was a very interesting concept, like scrolling through someone’s photo album. The short creates a wonderful parallel of how relationships have seasons and how we don’t always hide our feelings as well as we think we do. The camera never lies…

Hirsute, Dir.: A.J.Bond

Contrary to the pre-screening warning by the Outfest Program Director, Hirsute was, for me, the only truly f*ck-up selection in the program. In this dark Sci-fi short, we meet a young scientist the moment he discovers time travel. He knows he has discovered it because a future version of himself appears in his spontaneously water-filled tub. Our hero soon learns that he does not like this new version of himself and the question arises: it this him from the future, a mutation of himself, or maybe not himself at all. I can’t begin to tell you why this short is suited for OutFest. However, it is cool and creepy and geniusly executed for its own simplicity. It is good that this short has found an audience.

Just, Dir.: David Maurice Gil

                                                          Just is a traditional narrative where two men come to that awkward moment at the end of a hot lovemaking session. The part they skipped over before sleeping together. They reach the moment where they actually talk. It is an interesting and well-crafted piece about how people may surrender themselves physically with ease, but revealing one’s soul is the hard part. It’s really lovely scene work and s story that transcends orientation.

 

 

 

In the Closet is a traditional horror piece brought to us by doorQ.com. It preaches the usual morality themes: Don’t cheat on your boyfriend. Make sure the closet door is closed before you go to bed each night. And whenever you go home with a beautiful boy, remember that what you see isn’t always what you get.

In The Closet, Dir.: Jody Wheeler

 

Warrior is the shortest short I have ever seen at a total running time of one minute. Conceived as a commentary on the way men celebrate a sports victory, it is quite simply short and sweet.

Warrior, Dir.: Daniel Zox

 

The Young and Evil visits the opposite end of the spectrum, delivering a film piece that is both conceptually and intellectually complex. Karel is a bug-chaser (a person actively seeking to be infected with HIV). For his eighteenth birthday, he has been granted admittance into that house everyone knows about. The place where men go to have anonymous, perhaps unprotected sex. He has found his quarry in that house and preys relentlessly on the older man’s guilty and shame and loneliness and yearning until he gets what he wants.

The Young and Evil, Dir.: Julian Breece

This debut effort for director Julian Breece is an artfully crafted piece that illuminates the chronic self-loathing of the most impoverished young, gay African American men that can, and has, perverted into seeking out this demented form of love and human contact. This short is unsettling, yes. But empathy is the first step towards understand, and two steps towards prevention. Well done.

 

Bramadero, Dir.: Julian Hernandez

Bramadero was the most explicit selection in this shorts programs. Two men have a lengthy sexual encounter somewhere in the heights of an unfinished building. The encounter lasts all day, into the evening, without speaking. The piece was more a collage of action rather that having a driving theme or story. There are moments of aggression and tenderness and stillness and the partners did not even seem to necessarily be enjoying each other. This piece is simply an exploration of the naturalness of sex, even between men, juxtaposed against things that are man-made, like concrete and cities and clothing. The filmmaker was perhaps more interest in giving the audience a visual experience than telling a narrative. Another voice. Another point of view.

Film festivals are a beautiful thing.

OUTFEST is currently screening films through July 21th at the DGA, Fairfax and Other Surrounding Venues.

For more information call 213.480.7065

www.outfest.org

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