FILM INFO: A man sets out to retrieve the drugs that may save his father, who in the meantime must somehow defend himself from an intruder in a disease-stricken, nightmare future.
WRITTEN BY: Alex Rosling DIRECTED BY: Alex Rosling GENRE: Dystopia TIME: 10 minutes.
The Last Day ( 2017 )
Short Film Review
"The Last Day" was one of those short films that suffers one major problem. It doesn't put to camera, the concepts that it wants to show the viewer. With all the other production challenges an indie, low budget film faces, the "story" should never be left out of the fold. Let me explain. I had to go back and read the description after watching... because I had no idea what this film was about. For me, I seen a young man leave a cottage. The young man finds a random bottle of pills in the woods, and is attacked trying to get these pills. I didn't even know what these pills were for? Or why he was going to get them. I certainly didn't know what "The Last Day" as a title, was meant to mean and to be honest... none of it made any real sense. So, after going back and reading the description... I at least had some idea of what Alex Rosling, who wrote and directed, was trying to get at. To simplify what I'm attempting to write, a person shouldn't need to read a description of a movie first, in order to understand what is happening onscreen. Myself? I don't usually read movie descriptions. I'm not the only one. If a trailer exists, I may watch it to get an idea of what the film is about. Not all the time though. It's not up to the viewer to research a film before watching it. It's up to the writer, director, and cast to display the story onscreen. To be mindful that not every person will read the synopsis and get the back story and details. This stuff is part of the film, part of the story. Why wouldn't it actually be "in" the film? However, although I did get the "jist" of the story after finally reading the description, I still understood that none of the stuff in the description, actually pertained to the film at all. There's nothing in "The Last Day" that says anything about a diseased and nightmare future. For me, a few people were simply at a cabin in the woods. There was no mention of a sick Father, or more to the point... no mention of any Father at all. Sure. There was a man... but nothing was ever said in the film who he was. "The Last Day" requires a person to read up on it first, before watching it. For people like me, since there is nothing in the film itself about any story... it equals a bunch of random images. Visually, even for a low budget film, "The Last Day" is far from perfect. Blurring, jittering shots outside. Probably some kind of motion stabilizer at work. Dark jittering shots indoors. I understand that having no money means no real gear. Yet even a ten dollar tripod would have improved things one hundred fold. The indoor shots, were so dark it was really hard to see anything most of the time. Even a lamp or flashlight for lighting would have helped. Did I mention I watched this film on my sixty inch television? Even at that size, it was hard to tell what was happening. As a full production, "The Last Day" wasn't as bad as it may seem. There did happen to be some decent edits and being honest... I've seen a hell of a lot worse... with short films that actually had a few thousand dollars to play with. So this movie isn't a complete wash. If some attempt to actually explain the story, within the movie existed... I would have scored it higher. Yet, as a viewer... it just made no sense at all when I watched it. Yes, I went back and read the description, but I shouldn't have had to do that. It's not the viewers responsibility to entertain themselves or piece together a story. That's the job of the movie and movie makers. To let us know what we need to know. How else can you entertain? It's not my intention to discourage. As I wrote, I've seen much worse. Everyone needs to start at some point, and gain valuable experience along the way. It's only then that masterpieces can be made. One step at a time.