Jack Archer, Joseph Archer
"On in 15" was really a bit of an odd duck, in a most positive way of course. Why so odd? I'm glad you asked. Jack and Joseph Archer have created one of those one take, all or nothing productions that in truth are usually more gimmick than actually good. I've seen more than a few of these with the majority falling the wayside. Usually, they're between 5 and ten minutes so when this film landed in my mailbox I had very low expectations. Especially when the poster featured no less than 5 people, all needing to be rehearsed and captured during a continuous fifteen-minute run. As you may have guessed, I was wrong to doubt.
Scripted by Jack Archer, "On in 15" follows a band on the verge of a deal-breaking performance. Just before they are to go on stage, the lead singer takes some kind of pill and passes out - and nobody is able to wake him. The title of the film is both a statement of it's run time more or less, and the fact that the band has fifteen minutes to wake a comatose singer. Lots of performers, one single shot - and they pulled it off. "On in 15" is both comical and quite impressive, definitely a fun time.
So, let me be very clear. As I've hinted at above, I'm generally not a fan of this type of film. The truth is that I don't usually consider this type of production a movie. With no editing involved and no spit and polish, this kind of thing is more kin to a stage production than a film. Yet it's really hard to pull something like this off, and generally speaking, single take productions are more an exercise than a practical film. But here I am, not only impressed but actually entertained. I did laugh a few times and when I wasn't outright laughing, I was feeling the joyous vibe of the movie.
Script aside, what I think really did it for me was the acting. I don't know how much was actually scripted and how much was improvised - if any at all, but do know that the cast really nailed it. Perhaps not every gag worked perfectly, but the same can be said about real life, right? Credit should also be given to whoever was behind the camera. Rehearsed or simply going with the flow was my initial question - until I realized it didn't even matter. What needed to be seen was seen, and it all just worked.
At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what I consider an actual movie or just a video, because there's only one thing that's really important. Did "On in 15" hold my attention for 15 minutes? Did it entertain me? Both questions get the resounding answer of, "Yes! Yes, it did." By the time the credits begin to roll on any production isn't that all that really matters? "On in 15" easily earns it's four stars in my humble opinion. Highly recommended.