CASE STUDIES FROM THE GROAT CENTER FOR SLEEP DISORDERS Image

The renowned (but clearly factitious) Groat Center for Sleep Disorders presents this informational film about ASDICT (Adult Sleep Disorder Induced by Childhood Trauma). Writer/director Mitchell Rose plays L. Peabody Groat, Jr., the dry founder of the center, who also narrates the film.
With only a few gives, you can almost believe this is a real video for a real medical center. Using his background in choreography, Rose uses overhead shots from the bed of sleeping patients to show their disorders. In one instance, a couple performs a stop-motion dance on, around, and under the bed.
Another example of cute gags was a unique way to introduce background music into an otherwise banal medium of informational videos. During one scene, there is underlying accordion music being played by one of the mentally-disturbed patients in the background – a throwback to Mel Brooks’ humor (for those of us who remember him). The gag is repeated with a cello during the night dance scene.
The biggest sin this cute little film commits is that it’s not little enough. At seven minutes, there’s a little fat that can be trimmed. Some of the jokes can really tickle you, but they go on a tad too long (including the award-winning night dance).
I give a huge amount of credit to Mitchell Rose for using his talents as a choreographer and performance artist to put together a creative short film. Too often, I have seen someone with Rose’s background turn out a pretentious exhibition that plays to a fiercely limited audience. On first inspection, “Case Studies from the Groat Center for Sleep Disorders” is a cool piece that doesn’t take itself to seriously – and that is its strength.

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