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By Eric Campos | February 13, 2003

Valentine’s Day is here again and that can only mean that the Microcinema’s Independent Exposure is rolling out a love themed program of short films – “Love & Other Difficulties.” It’s a program for the couples into the artsy fartsy stuff for sure. It’s also for the lonely ones out there who enjoy an alternative viewing diet. If this is you, then “Love & Other Difficulties” is the Microcinema’s Valentine’s gift to you.
Something Smells Like Fish ^ *** ^ Directed by Peggy Wang
This animated short gives all new meaning to “hot p***y.” In the throes of passion, a couple doesn’t notice the trouble their little pink kitty is getting into, ultimately catching aflame and spoiling the hot and heavy coitus. Cute piece. It’s like something you’d see in Spike & Mike’s Sick and Twisted program.
O Ept Amis ^ ** ^ Directed by Michelle Beck/Jorge Calvo
So…um…yeeeeeeaaaah. A couple is joined at the head by a bunch of rubber bands and it sure looks like it hurts. Is this the filmmaker’s idea of relationships? Yeah, probably. The camera circles the couple as they are bathed in what looks like anaglyph 3D colors as the word “hello” keeps repeating. At least it’s only about a minute long.
Camille ^ * ^ Directed by Ben Hayflick
I hate it when I get the feeling that I’m watching some sort of filmmaking exercise rather than an actual film. I got that feeling with “Camille” and now I’m bummed.

On the way up to her mother’s house, Camille and Entienne have a lover’s spat. Seems that Camille is jealous of a woman meeting them at the house and Entienne is jealous of Camille’s ex-boyfriend whose ring she still wears. They make it up to the house where Entienne and this woman, the object of Camille’s jealousy, are getting along famously…until Camille finds them in the sack. Kind of a buzzkill there.

Camille then takes off for her ex’s place. Upon arriving, she finds him shacked up with someone else. Doh! To his relief, she pretends that she has the wrong apartment, but gives them her blessing anyways. She then hops back into her car, takes off the ring and heads into the city. That’s it. Did I miss something? Is there possibly something underneath it all that I’m just not grasping here? Lame.
Don Juan ^ ** ^ Directed by Shavkat Karimov
I can relate to this Don Juan guy. Just like he can’t go to the park without falling in love with a different woman, I can’t go into a porno store without falling in love with a different woman. We both have problems, but at least I don’t make people watch mine. In this short, our Don Juan seduces one woman after another at the park until it finally ends. No sir, I don’t like it.
The Girl Who Would Do Anything ^ *** ^ Directed by Brett Simon
There’s always that girl at school who has the reputation of doing “anything” sexually. Funny thing is, everyone talks about it, but no one takes her up on any action. That’s what this short deals with, illustrating a boy’s narration with semi-nude shots of a lovely young woman. I gotta admit, I gave this one extra points for a tremendous shot of this young woman playing tetherball with her a*s.
Thirst for Revenge ^ *** ^ Directed by Mehmet Ozcelik
Don’t piss off your lady…or anyone for that matter…because you never know what revenge driven psycho is going to lock you up in a cage and force you to stare at a bowl of hot, steamin’ urine. This may sound like heaven for you perverts out there, but for this guy it’s a bummer. Definitely the best looking film in the program and I did enjoy the unique torture. What, me pervert?
Disconnect ^ * ^ Directed by Cindi Kim
I love me some experimental cinema, but this film is completely out of control…and not in a good way. I was too busy laughing at this short, but what I gathered is that a young lady is expressing her negative outlook on relationships through bad martial arts moves. Booooooo. “Disconnect” gives experimental cinema a bad name.
Luz En Reposo (Resting Light) ^ *** ^ Directed by Roberto Bolado Munoz
A woman leaves her blind husband home for the afternoon, thinking that he couldn’t possibly get into any trouble while on his own. But shortly after she leaves, her husband has his lover over for a quick f**k. But then a major earthquake brings the wife home early to find that it’s been turned into a den of sin. Yes, the s**t hits the fan. Gorgeously shot!
Love Story ^ **** ^ Directed by Signe Baumane
Hope you like insanity. This animated short starts out nice and simple between a boy and a girl in love. But then a dog in a brown bag and a crocodile with a gigantic penis is thrown into the mix and everything goes to hell. What can I say? It’s funny stuff.
Passion ^ *** ^ Directed by Serge Gregory
It’s a pretty love letter from the filmmaker to a lover long gone. What more can I say? I sure as hell don’t know.
Hit Clown ^ *** ^ Directed by Chris Mancini
A chance meeting sees a party clown and a hitman swapping bags, which in turn sees them swapping occupations, which ultimately has them swapping bodily fluids. Cute film, but it just seems like it needs more kick…more PARUMPH!!

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