Audrey, called Drey, is 15, African-American, a Brooklyn high school student, a Tootsie-Pop usually in her mouth. She lives in a flat with her mother and older brother. Her mom is tired, working double shifts. Audrey is an observer. She finds one of her teachers, Mr. Dunne, interesting. He's white, with curly hair and pork-chop sideburns. Sometimes his lectures are philosophical. He keeps to himself. One evening she surprises him in the locker room: is he taking drugs? He offers to drive her home. Her anthropological study of Mr. Dunne continues. She goes to his classroom at noon to ask a question and to leave a gift. Only connect. —<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Read Bob the Moo's review--it gives insights that explain why this film was made in the first place.
My review is based on never having seen HALF NELSON and I am thankful for Bob the Moo for explaining the context for this short film. It seems that Bob and I have odd taste because we both love short films and when he explained this film was made to be used as a "pitch", then it makes a lot of sense. I've seen a lot of similar films made by young and inexperienced film makers. Unlike shorts made in the golden age of Hollywood, these films were NOT meant to be shown to a wider audience and were more like demo-tapes--to be seen by potential financial backers so that money could be obtained to make a feature-length film. In this context, I can clearly understand why GOWANUS, BROOKLYN was made and why it had such a disjoint and incomplete look about it. You see, instead of a complete narrative, you just catch an unsatisfying glimpse of the main character's life. Nothing is resolved and so much waits to be explained. In this context, the film isn't bad from a technical standpoint, but someone like myself why didn't see HALF NELSON will be no doubt confused and left feeling unsatisfied. Try not to see this film without seeing HALF NELSON first--otherwise, you, too, will feel unfulfilled.
- Jun 11, 2008
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