I think it’s the first time this year when I actually thought I’d have no decent shorts to watch on a Friday evening. I ventured on the Tropfest website to have a go at the New York finalists and I couldn’t believe the amount of pretentious shite that got shortlisted for the finals. Fair enough, there was a handful of good entrants, but I think the official top 3 (with a special nod to the winner) were, maybe not so much terrible, but mediocre. Yup, that’s a good word – mediocre.
This time, the keyword was ‘bridge’ and, quite expectedly – as the festival was taking place in NY, most of the shorts featured the Brooklyn Bridge in some way or another, and my God, was that annoying… So, it should come as no surprise that my favorite short of the featured finalists had nothing to do with all that crap.
It’s called “Bridget” (directed by David Eisenberg and Kaela Wohl) and there are no bridges in it… sort of… Anyway, it’s wonderfully witty and funny in its portrayal of a potentially vital problem of global proportions we’re going to be facing in the foreseeable future. Apart from that, it’s about a girl trying desperately to sign up for online dating. It’s only 2 minutes long, but it’s well worth it. Plus, it didn’t try to be something that it wasn’t only to fit the criteria of the festival. Maybe I’m slowly evolving into this uber-cynical monstrosity that cannot and will not be satisfied by any attempt of deeper thought in indie cinema, but I think that more often than not, young aspiring film-makers are totally missing the point of a short film by trying to squeeze a whole damn story with character arcs and complex plots, and multiple scenes and what-not, all the while the message the short was supposed to be carrying ends up omitted; covered by layers of nonsense.
Well, my faith was restored when I saw “Bridget”. It’s light, funny, nicely shot and while really minimalistic, the story kind of makes you think about the phenomenon of the Internet and how its evolution is surely going to be affected by the sheer volume of people using it. If anything, coming up with a username for that forum you’ve just been trying to join is going to be a challenge.