BFI Flare festival – films 4 & 5

Somewhere in Between was a series of 5 shorts running under the tag of some relationships last a single night. Others last a lifetime. Confession time here – things have been hectic at work and at home on the voluntary front and I may have drifted off in one of these 🙂

San Cristóbal was a rather sweet little tale set on a remote island in southern Chile about two young men forming a connection which is then interrupted by the intolerance of some parochially-minded locals. Beautifully acted and shot there was a distinct upbeat ending.

Noam was a lovely Israeli story set against the backdrop of a school performance of Romeo and Juliet. Sixteen year old Noam auditions (despite his parents disapproval). From the moment he sets foot on the back stage he falls in love, with both the theatrical world but also with Shay, his competition for the role of Romeo.

Trémulo was another great little story from Mexico. Carlos works in his uncle’s barbershop when Julio comes in for a haircut. Their eyes meet and later that night, when Carlos is sweeping up, Julio returns with the pretense of needing a shave.  They spend the night together, eating, chatting, dancing while knowing the next morning soldier Julio will depart for a new posting. It was absolutely adorable, and sweet and beautifully acted and shot.

Sunset – sorry no IMDb link for this – also I confess not to being able to say much about it as I drifted off into a quick snooze while it was showing. According to the programme it was supposed to be a hypnotic study of passion and desire between a student and construction worker.

Credence was the film both R and I were very interested in seeing – with a sci-fi backdrop telling the story of two dads and a daughter torn apart during the last evacuation from Earth as violent storms make survival impossible.  Alas it fell totally flat for me because the central premise wasn’t so much allowed to develop organically but rather sledgehammered into the audience’s face with a 2×4 – repeatedly and endlessly.

We had a break of several hours – enough time to eat and for me to nip home for a bit before the second film of the day which was another in the hit column.

Akron had a bit of a classical feel. The writer says he wanted to pen a film with two houses set – by fate – against each other, with two strong central mother-son relationships and revolving around a gay love story.

Christopher and Benny fall in love, not knowing that an incident in their past will tear them apart. Benny then has to work out whether to defy his family and still continue to see Chris, despite the shadow the past throws over their present.

It’s another tale of family and friendship, love, compromise and forgiveness. Beautifully shot in Akron, Ohio the cast completely knocks it out of the park and first time screen writer and co-director deliver an incredibly accomplished and very enjoyable film.  I’d definitely recommend going to see it if you have the chance.

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