“Still Life with Corpse” is an excellent example of the three-film montage school of filmmaking that was so big back in the eighties. There were whole hosts of movies that were comprised of three short to shortish films back to back to back. Some of them featured overmastering story arcs—the “Tales From The Darkside” movie comes readily to mind on that. Called a “wraparound story”, “Tales…” featured a little boy locked in a cell telling stories to keep from being eaten by a witch. Others didn’t have a wraparound story. It doesn’t hurt that, for the most part, Dorsey’s shorts are high quality.
First, we get “Sack Lunch”, which gives us the heretofore impossible act of presenting a corporation that’s scarier than Enron and whatever company it is that Dilbert’s working for right now. They’re a company that prides itself on their aggressive stance against waste—a stance that extends to their employees.
Think about the title. You’ll get the twist, and probably a bit earlier than you want.
Second up is “The Best Christmas Movie Ever”, three and a half all-too-short minutes of incredible shock value. The shock value is so incredible that to explain it here would destroy the impact of the entire short. Let me just say that there could have been so much more that could have been done with this. There are a host of directions Dorsey could have gone with this and gotten vastly more than three and a half minutes of runtime out of it.
Lastly, we get “The Field”. Described as “a sort of homage to the horror films of the 70s with a small nod to the giallo style”, it’s short on plot, way too long on seventies homage for my tastes, but with a distinctive twist ending that keeps things interesting.
All in all, Dorsey’s package of short films comes off well. Some improvements could have been made, sure enough, but what’s here is worth your time.