Oh, how I've missed The Institute and those freaky mask designs. This isn't the first Tim Earnheart short I've seen, and it seems in one form or another, it always comes back to one company. You guessed it, The Institute. While actual connections are for viewers to pick out for themselves, I can write that Earnheart's short films I've seen - at the very least, take place in the same world. One of high tech science fiction, where it seems near anything is possible. "Nemesis" fits like a glove and action sequences aside, when you look closely at the design and look of the film, there's no mistake it's a Tim Earnheart production. And yet again let me just write that I absolutely love those masks. To be honest? With the plot lines of these short films what they are, it is possible that these films really don't take place in the same world - rather alternate versions of themselves. But that's another story and not mine to tell.
In "Nemesis" we are quickly brought up to speed and introduced to two long time friends. Only, they're not quite friends and more like frenemies - but funny-sounding words aside, a definite rivalry is present and from the feel of things, it's always been there. This time however, things have gotten out of hand and one friend, Astrid, has grossly overstepped. After a conversation over drinks, Astrid's "best friend" Evelyn has seemingly forgiven her for a huge betrayal - but all is not as it seems. Evelyn, with some finesse, passes off an invite to an exclusive club - and there's no way Astrid is going to miss out on this. Invite card in hand, she eventually makes her way over to The Institute - to see what all the fuss is about. Only... the experience she's signed up for isn't quite what she was expecting - and the fight for her life begins. The double meaning of this movie's title is a clever one - and this film is all about the action. It just so happens that "Nemesis" doesn't disappoint.
From a production standpoint, "Nemesis" hits nearly all the right marks. From the bright visuals and use of effects, there's no mistaking this is designed to be a pulse-pounding action flick - or that it's one of Earnheart's babies. Complete with booming sub hits and an aggressive audio mix, the sound design itself plays a key role - allowing some forgiveness for the occasional awkward action edit or slightly out of step dialog. These things do exist but as I've suggested, they're minor and infrequent. Possibly, I only noticed them because I was actually looking for them. Generally speaking, the overall film itself is pretty slick and definitely gets the job done.
So, just what is that job? Simple. Action and over-the-top shenanigans. "Nemesis" is an action flick and is not ashamed of that fact. The background story holds together what is essentially, a showcase of cool, pulse-pounding action pieces. There's really nothing to complain about unless you're looking for some deep, harrowing story that will blow your mind or play with your emotions. Who wants that in an action flick? Not me. Here, we've got the tech, we've got the nemesis, we've got the sound, the guns, and the violence. Pure bliss for those looking for some harmless action-y goodness. However, even though I make the plot seem secondary, it's just as good as most any other action film out there - and the acting is perhaps even better than some - in its B-Movie way.
Overall? As I've written already, if you're an action fan you'll easily have a great time with this one. This is a film you jump into for a quick dose of action, when all you're looking for is a quick dose of action. It's all here, including a more than casual resemblance to another nemesis I've watched onscreen from a bigger studio. I'll just leave it at that. So, turn your brain off, buckle down and have some fun. "Nemesis" is just what the doctor ordered, unless they're one of those crazy folks over at The Institute. Beware suspicious invitations bearing an infinity symbol - no good will come of it.