The Last Ferry From Grass Island
A Quiet older man (Wang Yang) steers his fishing boat comes home with his catch of the day to his wheelchair- bound mother on Grass Island Hong Kong near Shenzhen China. His mom (Yeung Yee Yee) is fixated on the TV watching a dubbed version of Police Story on the TVB channel. The man preps the fish and starts dinner as a woman (Tai Bo) approaches with two baskets. She silently enters the home moving to the back of the residence past the older woman with intent. she has been sent to permanently retire the man who was her mentor. How they solve their dilemma offers twist and turns as her protegee is determined to finish the job and catch the last ferry out. Director Linhan Zhan packs an abundance of content and emotion into a largely silent.piece. Yeung Yee Yee offers depth and comic relief despite not uttering a single word as Ah Ma. It's a perfectly paced thirteen-minute short film that well worth the watch.
**** Out of 4.
Last Ferry From Green Island | Linhan Zhang | Hong Kong | 2019 | 13 Minutes.
A voice speaks over a cracking line counting down to one similar to a psychologist attempting to put someone under hypnosis. a female voice joins in as the count approaches zero then we see her in her home working as a telephone counselor. She is trying to help others as it is obvious that she has health issues herself. Siriani (Tahirih Vejdani) takes her next call from a drug-addicted woman who she is tries to help get into detox but a medical clearance is required. The woman balks at the extra required step then the caller from the opening returns even more aggressive and controlling than before. At the same time Siriani is late departing for her boyfriend's Elliot's place to celebrate his birthday. Siriani is caught between her desire to help and doing right by her boyfriend as she falls under the spell of regular caller Drake.
***1/2 Out of 4.
Receiver | Cavan Campbell | Canada | 2020 | 15 Minutes.
A girl walks home alone at night is a good description of Rong. The Girl Yoni (Maryam Supraba) gets into a shared van taxi and is ogled by the other male passengers inside. A male performer Lingga (Anceoeamar) in a local sideshow spots her in her red dress and follows her into an alley with bad intentions. Being ignored makes him angry and he commits a vile act before cornering Yoni. He appears to be dominant when the ground shifts beneath him and the hunter becomes the hunted. Performed brilliantly in a tight space Rong is a mix of the supernatural and the psychological underpinned by driving drumbeat with a series of closing images that will stay imprinted in the viewer's mind's eye.
*** Out of 4.
Rong | Indira Iman | Indonesia | 2019 | 13 minutes.
Making sure that you are chosen is the musical theme of Bow-wow featuring dogs up for adoption in a kennel. Komi Chan Kang) the six-year-old male Maltese seems depressed. He is down to three days left before facing a final fate. Mix comes up with the idea of Dog-ception as opposed to inception which is for humans. The plan; go into Komi's dreams and plant happy thoughts armed with your totem to get Komi presentable for adoption before the looming deadline. There is no worry of limbo as dogs can only go two levels. The incantation is sung and in they go. Moong/ Furloss( Hyunkyung Ko) Chuu-Chuu (Shinyoung Park) and the leader Mix (Donggyu Lee). Level one is a happy bright wide open field but a deeper dive to level two reveals a cramped dirty apartment of Komi's former master where the trauma took place. The positive message is sung to Komi in three party harmony everything seems good then it's not. Bow-wow features a playful twist on Christopher's Nolan's Inception in Korean featuring taking dogs that take on human form when they dream. The lesson here include the importance of friendship, family and persevering through tough times. Does their plan work? It's left up to the viewer to decide.
***1/2 Out of 4.
Bow-wow | Hyungnam Pak | South Korea | 2019 | 23 Minutes.