Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 14 minutes
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Gideon Blackman’s It’s No Game is another example of a spectacular idea that doesn’t quite work on film. I’m not exactly sure what went wrong in this case, but chances are a variety of issues are to blame.
Blackman’s plot concerns a not so bright young man named Michael Thompson Fields (Omer Warman). Michael’s just been booted by his girlfriend, Janice (Marcella Edgecombe-Craig). One day, Michael attempts to visit his ex, in order to retrieve some DVDs belonging to his friend. When Janice refuses to let him in, Michael calls his friend to give him the bad news, but doesn’t pay attention to his surroundings while he does this.
I think you can guess what happens next in the story, but it’s at this crucial juncture that cinematic glitches occur, impeding our ability to clearly see what happens in the movie.
Yes, green fields become greener, daylight appears lighter, and a barefooted man named Mr. G (Christopher Keddie) beams in. Mr. G is attired in khaki pants and a white T-shirt under a whiter dress shirt. I suppose you can guess who Mr. G is—and of course, he explains who he is, and who he’s not (God)— which helps, somewhat… but I still don’t understand the name, Mr. G.
After this, the plot tends to unravel, and critical events are not really tied together. One major example is when Mr. G enables Michael to inhabit another body, but doesn’t show us what the previous inhabitant of the body is doing in the interim.
Certain sequences in the film add nothing to the plot, and I’m not sure what they add to the overall picture. One example is the scene where Janice’s roommate Rachel (Leila Reid) explains that she broke up with her boyfriend because all he wanted was to have sex. Rachel has a black eye because, as she explains it, her boyfriend didn’t appreciate being dumped. When she explains her horrible dilemma to Michael, he stares impassively at her, and then promptly leaves the room.
So what’s the purpose of that scene?
Another cinematic glitch refers back to Michael in his new body. We see his new face only twice, first, when he looks into a compact mirror, and second, through a singular POV shot of a man named Alex (Joseph Loughrell). From then on, Michael visually appears to be the same man he always was, except for the fact that he’s wearing a variety of dresses.
It just seems to me that the filmmaker could have gone the extra mile to show some consistency in visual connections.
Aside from these types of problems, It’s No Game does have its good points. For example, the actors don’t try to be funny, and, therefore, are. And as I said, the basis for the plot is philosophically fascinating, and one that that interests me a great deal.
What’s also reassuring is that filmmakers who have interesting plot-ideas are usually destined to make a great movie. Here’s hoping Gideon Blackman’s next work is soon to come, and a huge success.
This film was submitted for review through our Submission for Review system. If you have a film you’d like us to see, and we aren’t already looking into it on our own, you too can utilize this service.
Posted on April 7, 2013 in Reviews by Amy R. Handler
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