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Showcase 9 has it all: a little bit of action, a dash of romance, and some comedy, both intentional and otherwise. The most discernible thread running throughout is a faint multicultural flair, and yet we’re still subjected to another climactic prom night where the unsuspecting nerd asks the hottie to wear his promise ring.
Little Horses: It’s no surprise that this won the Audience and Filmmaker’s Favorite Awards at this year’s festival; it’s easily the best short I’ve screened. A poignant slice of life that’s both funny and touching.
ABC: This is either brilliant, straight-faced satire or one of the worst attempts at action movie dramatics this side of Uwe Boll.
Something Special: A touching if clumsy reminder of the costs of war that doubles as an ersatz New Zealand marketing campaign.
Lenny Morris vs. The Universe: An unbearably quirky and formulaic nerd gets the pretty girl story in which the phrase “Houston, we have a problem” passes for dialogue.
El Torero y La Tora (The Bullfighter and the Bull): A brief silent comedy in which a Spanish Walter Mitty equates a stocky middle-aged woman with a raging bull.
Amadores (Amateurs): Banter leading up to physical contact is almost never witty and nearly always cringe-worthy. And then (spoiler!) we die. The end.
Intercambios (Exchanges): A teachable moment captured on film, Exchanges is the story of a well-intentioned Latina slighted by the blonde powers that be.
Miracle was not available to screen.
Fri., Sept. 16 at 9 p.m. at US Navy Memorial