By Admin | January 24, 2011

The set-up of Duncan Birmingham’s short “Excuse Me” is pure sitcom vulgarity: while in the throes of orgasm, a guy mumbles a name that does not belong to the girlfriend in his arms. Some bickering occurs – he puts the charm factor into overload with a smiley state of denial, while she runs the risk of becoming a virago by insisting that he confess. Everything seems to settle down in romantic reconciliation until the truth accidentally slips out.

Cy Carter and Angela Trimbur are attractive as the combustible couple, but they become somewhat boring as their characters retreat into immature cliches. Birmingham’s script drops odd references to Kafka, Orwell and jazz music, as if he was trying to shoehorn Woody Allen-style intellectualism into this “Two and a Half Men”-style comedy. And anyone who cannot guess the too-obvious closing joke well before the halfway mark deserves a wet noodle slap.

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  1. Max Leland says:

    Saw at Sundance and loved it enough that I just looked it up on line to forward to friends. The reviewer doesn’t get the joke at all if he’s faulting the filmmakers dropping random intellectual references– that’s clearly the male character trying to throw his girlfriend off his scent/change the subject. The “scatting” line’s hilarious! I don’t think the ending was supposed to be a surprise– the twist came in the middle and the actors both milked that moment wonderfully.

  2. brad solomon says:

    Vulgar, sure. Would have to be with the subj matter. But myself and the audience i saw it with laughed quite a bit and gasped at the husband’s midpoint reveal.

  3. Sondhi says:

    Aww, this was online for a while as part of the AFI Short Film Showcase, but I guess its been taken down for Sundance. I thought it was good, that the verbal repartee’ was believable and had an interesting twist midway through. The acting was well done too. Not stellar, but better ttan the review suggests.

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