Transience (2013) Movie Review
by Parissa Janaraghi
Transience is a short silent drama directed and written by Tan See Yum. The story follows George and Tom (Timothy J. Cox and Joshua Michael Payne), a couple who have reached a crossroads in their relationship. George, who looks to be leading a successful professional life, wants to fully commit and make their relationship official but Tom, who seems to be hanging on to his youth, doesn't seem to want to make the final leap. We then follow Tom as he struggles to come to a decision and it's only from seeing a vision of an older George that Tom has an epiphany and is finally able to make his choice and move forward with his life leaving the old one behind.
Making this as a silent black and white film set in present time was a radical choice and I think had this not been a short film it could have gone very wrong and the actors could have gone overboard with their acting to compensate for lack of dialogue and reduced their parts to one dimensional caricatures which would have been disastrous considering this is a drama and not a comedy. As it is I think the simple story line, the use of symbols and both Cox and Payne using simple body gestures and showing their emotions through their eyes have managed to successfully convey to the audience what's going on without the need for dialogue or music, which was only used right at the end to signify Tom's final decision.
Overall, Transience is an interesting experiment and a competently made short film with a straightforward narrative and just enough depth to keep the audience engaged without the need for dialogue or music which manages to not come across as too overly pompous.
Check out the film for yourself: