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By Don R. Lewis | March 19, 2007

2007 SXSW SHORT FILM! Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, O.K.? A paramedic and a security guard are hired to baby-sit a breathing hole for a radio DJ who is buried some 40 feet under the ground. As the two try to get to know each other and get through an endless stream of nightshifts, we soon discover they’re totally different people who are perfectly suited to burn the midnight oil (or joint) while guarding a breathing tube for a radio promotion.

Dan Brown’s short “The Pipe” is a funny little film. How can you go wrong with a premise like the one they have along with Nathan Zellner and Kent Osborne sharing time onscreen? One way would be to try and get all funny and quirky with the camera and luckily Brown doesn’t do that. He’s smart enough to know who his actors are and he lets them do the heavy lifting. Both guys play perfectly off one another with Zellner as a stoic lughead and Osborne as a druggie flake who can’t sit still. Plus the simple yet hilarious script (based on a story by Jack Pendarvis) allows for the audience to not only take a peek at the lives of these two men but also become as intrigued as the characters are as to whether or not there’s actually a living man at the bottom of “The Pipe.”

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