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By Merle Bertrand | January 19, 2001

It’s almost instinctive. The first thing many young aspiring filmmakers attempt to shoot when they get their first camera is a fight scene. The SECOND thing is usually a chase scene of some sort, usually involving gunplay. The only difference is, most of those other filmmakers, unlike director Scott Pittock, don’t go around entering their finished experiments in film festivals.
For “Pop Gun,” Pittock’s three-minute high speed odyssey through parks and playgrounds, is nothing more than a stripped down chase scene with an ironic twist ending. A man (Chad Salem) armed only with a cigarette and a pistol — albeit a pistol of apparently infinite firing capability — relentlessly chases after an unarmed man (Joel Feistner). And chases. And chases, firing his gun repeatedly while a mysterious French voice-over drones on in the background. While my rudimentary high school and college Francais is nowhere near capable of determining whether or not this voice-over actually contributes anything or is merely stylish background gibberish, it really doesn’t matter. If one needs to understand French in order to “get” this suspiciously campy effort, then Pittock’s lost most of his audience right out of the gate.
No, it’s best to take this visually engaging flick for what it is; a bit of a farce that pays lighthearted lip service to French New Wave films. Still, outside of this low-frills film’s ironic ending, the rather senseless “Pop Gun” merely fires mostly blanks.

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