Monday, December 17, 2012

Sonic-Cinema Review of SIMPLE MIND

Simple Mind (Short) (2012): B+

In “Simple Mind,” writer-director Phil Newsom had me, lost me, then had me again with a short film that was intriguing, and a little frustrating, in the way it told a story of mental illness.

Timothy J. Cox plays a man in a psychiatrist’s office, telling a young therapist (Kristi McCarson) about a woman he meets, and falls in love with instantly. He tells her about things he gives her, like a pair of red slippers. Then, a twist, albeit one we can see coming; turns out he has killed this woman, and he gets excited about it, justifying it to the therapist, who continues to hear him out. Of course, this is the moment where, in real life, an actual therapist would have to make a call to the police, but there’s one more twist in store.

It was the portion of the 7-minute film where the man was talking about murdering this woman where the film lost me, and took me out of any sense of reality because it seemed so out of character for a real therapist to be so calm during this moment. The final twist—one of two possibilities I considered—brought the film back to reality, and headed into the end credits on a strong note. The mark of a good short film is the idea of wanting to spend more time with the story it tells. By that criteria, this is a very good one, indeed.

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