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By Amy R. Handler | October 15, 2013

Do you ever wonder why we always encounter the same individuals, even though twenty years can go by, and the world we live in is infinitely populated? That’s what appears to happen in David Maire’s 13-minute movie, In Session, though how and why will be up to you to determine.

The plot concerns an attempted robbery gone terribly awry when ex-con Tony Garcia (Alfie Berneti) seemingly unknowingly, breaks into the home of his once prison-shrink, Dr. Eli Beck (David Sitler). Neither man seems to recognize the other at first, but when they do, the result is most disturbing, indeed.

If this sounds like a very interesting concept, it is… or at least, it should be. Unfortunately, the story’s structure unravels early on because of way too much dialogue that sounds decibels too loud. These, in turn, distract from Maire’s intended suspense, which is very briefly conveyed through a flash of closely cropped but still legible newspaper text.

In my opinion, less is more, even in the shortest of movies. Maire does utilize this technique with the very brief appearances of three characters, namely, little David Beck (Nathan Esser), Julia Beck (Patricia Olvera), and a small girl at the library (Lauren Esser). Not surprisingly, these minor but very potent characters utter only a few words between them.

In spite of Maire’s inability to subdue his (perhaps) overzealous principal actors, so that the film can ignite the imagination through intervals of silence, In Session is not without its strong moments. The movie’s strengths include a very interesting visual where we see Garcia strapped to a chair, as if viewing him through a keyhole. This far off look through a doorway resembles the paintings of the Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer, and creates the disturbing effect of imprisonment. Another unique, and equally alarming, visual is the use of a menorah as a weapon.

This film was submitted for review through our Submission for Review system. If you have a film you’d like us to see, and we aren’t already looking into it on our own, you too can utilize this service.

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