Stramash

I don’t know if this film has ever been released commercially. It seems to have been marketed at Cannes in 2003. I borrowed a copy from a friend who was in it.

Anyway, it’s a feature-length film about a motley crew of variously violent Glaswegians, and the events following a stabbing. It features knife fights, car chases, fantastic editing, variable acting ability (and some of the creakiest dialogue you’ve heard), and was made for the absurdly low sum of £800. (Actually, under £800, I believe.)

It’s well worth watching if for no other reason than to see what a dedicated filmmaker can do on an absolute shoestring.

Now the main problem with watching the film is that the two leads are not great. Also, it’s not really clear where the story is going (though I did watch it initially thinking it was only going to be 15 minutes long, and I might have been less impatient knowing that it was feature length). However, it’s intriguing to watch, and some of it is particularly visceral and involving.

The editing and cinematography are astounding. (I have it on good authority that it was lit with one light, and tissuepaper as a makeshift filter, but you really wouldn’t know.) The director, Simon Beal, evidently has a very bright future ahead of him. So long as he hires someone who can write dialogue.

The real big deal about this film, though, is that it highlights the continually shrinking gap between what Stephen Speilberg can accomplish and what The Rest of Us can do if we put our minds to it. (’Course, the dedication and committment bit is generally the difficult part.)

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