REVIEWS

The Thinning Blue Line: A Day in the Life of a Mid-Wales Copper [Liam A. Matthews, UK, 2017] /// An

In 2018, the UK saw policing reach the point of near collapse. Budget cuts led to regional police forces diminishing drastically in size, with basic aspects of the service – answering phone calls, crime investigation, neighbourhood policing and attending emergencies – in danger of becoming unsustainable. It is an ongoing and, of course, a worrying state of affairs that has had the public in despair and the government up in arms. In sharp and satirical fashion, Liam A. Matthews’ The Thinning Blue Line imagines the direct effects that these austere cuts might have on the community, taking us behind the scenes of a fictional Mid-Wales Police Department. The 'mockumentary' focuses on Gywn Jones,

I Am [Christopher Eadicicco, USA, 2017] /// Mommy's Girl [Adele Biraghi, USA, 2018]

Motivation, hard work and determination are the key components in achieving success whether in business, sport or life in general. It is the key message at the heart of I Am, a 30-second sportswear commercial from American director Christoper Eadicicco. Intended for an advertising spot, the short film is ultimately a routine branding exercise designed for Kimurawear, "Canada’s leader in quality martial arts supplies". But, in a very short space of time, it attempts to do so much more. The film begins with a woman (Carolina Coto) in a hooded sweatshirt running, facing square on at the camera which captures her centre frame and in slow-motion. The montage then shows her wrapping her hands with

(Untitled) Morning [Ruxandra Mitache, Switzerland, 2018] /// How Can I Tell You? [Barbara Creutz, Fr

With slow-moving close-ups the camera ponderously studies blades of grass and petals of lavender underneath a singular, droning musical note hovering hypnotically in glass-like textures. (Untitled) Morning begins in monochrome and slowly blends into colour, the lavenders repeatedly blurring in and out of focus. Mitache manages to capture the minutiae of the flowers’ movements as the air softly moves around them. It is really quite a simple film. Film in one continuous shot, it is abstract and experimental in its overall execution, but ultimately one dimensional and lacking any real meaning. It is a rather casual experiment, design seemingly to play with the limits of the lens’ scope and focu

Daddy [Kacper Anuszewski, Poland, 2018] /// I Modh Rúin (In Secret) [Ríonach Ní Néill, Ireland, 2017

A young married couple argue in front of their son Christopher (Eryk Pawlikowsky). Janusz, the father (played by the film’s director Kacper Anuszewski) is always out drinking with his friends and the mother (Joanna Madry) rages that he doesn’t spend enough time with the family. This is the primary cause of the couple’s marital conflict that triggers their separation and prompting a battle for custody of young Christopher, the unwitting officiator of this procedure. Christopher, with a heavy heart chooses his mother, a decision heavily resented by his father. As a parting gift the boy hands his father a small toy figurine. The father believes the boy’s mother has manipulated the situation to

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