If you were a lonely businessman longing for human contact, where would you go? To bend the ear of the local bartender? To find female comfort at the local strip club? How about just getting a dog and calling it a night? Well, in “Polished,” human contact seems to come in the form of a local shoe shiner. Not only does our lonely businessman get a damn fine shine, he gets so much more… spiritually speaking of course.
In a nutshell, “Polished” is about a tortured soul of a man who spills his guts to the local shoe shiner. While the woman is just trying to do her job, she comforts the man by way of a simple shoeshine and conversation. He finally leaves the woman of old school labor and wanders into the world with a rested mind and a damn fine shine on the shoes.
I wish there was more to tell you. Sure, I could spend hours on the “inner meaning” about the soul of a shoe to the soul of a lonely man, but I’ll leave that to the teachings of film theory 101. “Polished” is one of those open ended, microcosm of life shorts that you wonder what the fundamental purpose was. To question my life? My passion? To stay away from crazy old businessmen who obsess about shoeshines?
It’s one of those films that lingers without a solid focus, yet is still mildly entertaining. Director Ed Gass-Donnelly directs his actors with certain flair, but the overall subject matter would work better as a stage play, which is what the script was based on in the first place.
What shines best (no pun intended) is shoe shiner Karyn Dwyer. She has all the characteristics of the typical working class stiff with a likeable honesty. As for the rest of “Polished,” the title alone pretty much sums up the entertainment value. Nothing more, nothing less.