2.5 Stars
Year Released: 2008
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 14 minutes
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Charlie Thistle has just been promoted within the Department of Normality. Now he gets to maintain the status quo… if he so chooses. Instead of maintaining order, though, this previously hapless, running-on-autopilot man approves the color blue and introduces new words into the vocabulary. You just know his superiors at the Department won’t go for that bit of nonsense.

Shot in black and white (until the blue and a few other colors get approved), this short film is really just a fancy way of saying that one person can make a difference in the world as long as you are willing to break away from the norm. It’s a message that has been taught in theory since grade school, and like grade school, this film shows you what happens if you try to actually make that difference. It isn’t easy, but it is often worth the hell you’ll go through in trying to make those differences stick. Is that all worthy of a film, however?

Yes and no. The short answer is that any idea is worthy of being put on film. The long answer is: If you are going to tackle this subject, why not do so in a bolder, less clichéd way? A pencil pusher surrounded by drones at a non-descript government office rubberstamping his way through the day? It’s an image we’ve seen before in everything from movies to car commercials. Using such a character defeats your purpose.

Charlie Thistle is a nice film to look at, and its message is fine – especially for those who have not really ever heard it before (there are about four of you out there). It would’ve been better off, however, if it took that message to heart and did something to break the mold. As it stands, we’ve seen this movie before in various forms, and it doesn’t seem fresh.

Posted on February 3, 2012 in Reviews by

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