Lee Neville’s short film, Time Stops Moving, introduces us to Adam (Lee Neville), a man in love with his girlfriend Jenna (Glenda Weedman). He’d like to tell her certain things, but is unable to do so. She too has something she’d like to say to him, as does the friend (Krystal Connell) harboring a crush, and yet another woman (Karla Jenkins) who has strong feelings for Adam. It’s a lot of thoughts and feelings quietly festering, as everyone’s emotions build to a boil.
If you find yourself confused during the film, you’re not alone. Part of this is the way the film is edited, overlapping dialogue and images. Part of it is the downside of the low budget production; some scenes are too dark, or the audio isn’t crisp enough. It can be disorienting. You figure it out, mostly because it gives you a lot of time to do so.
Which means it can also be laborious at times, which is an odd thing to say about a film that isn’t even ten minutes long. There’s just a feeling like the narrative is stuck in the mud, spinning its wheels. And it’s not like it’s a fun time; everyone is just so damn serious!
It also doesn’t help that it ends on a bit of a cliffhanger (a sequel was eventually made, Time Always Moving, and a trilogy of short films followed). As a standalone film, it is a small collection of people who all need to say something, but no one seems to be able to say it until, suddenly, they all try to say it at the same time. Somewhat interesting, but not overwhelmingly so.
As previously mentioned, the film’s technical shortcomings mean it isn’t the most visually appealing film, though it does try via overlays and composition to deliver something for the eye. Still, there is an energy to the piece, and that creates just enough engagement to pull you through. Sure, that energy might be exasperation, but it’s still something.
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