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The Scree (2004)

  Directed by: Paul McDermott
Written by: Paul McDermott
Starring: Steve Abbott, Ruth Cracknell, Sara Groen, Paul Livingston, Paul McDermott
Links: The Scree on the IMDb
Genre: Short
Awards: AFI Awards: Best Short Fiction Film 2004 (nominee)

This movie gets: 6.00 (1 rating) Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

"Written, directed by, and starring Paul McDermott" - a review by pearly

I'm not really all that fond of Paul McDermott's work. Sure, I watched the first 3000 episodes of Good News Week, but after that, I got a little bored with it. With this, McDermott's debut film, he has adapted a kind-of adult, macabre children's book (if you will) that he wrote, and turned it into a film, and, to be more precise, a short film.

Narrated by Ruth Cracknell, the film is part live action, part animation. Each of the five lead characters (the good guys) is played by an actor, while the backdrops as well as the various monsters in the story are all cardboard cut-out animated around the cast. It's almost like a play with two-dimensional sets, but on the big screen.

McDermott casts two of his long-time cohorts, both Flacco (Paul Livingston) and the Sandman (Steve Abbott) along with himself. Two females round out the bunch, with Sara Groen playing the younger version of the woman narrated by Cracknell. The film didn't come across as unique in any way to me, nor was it funny (I don't know whether it was meant to be, but I'm assuming so, as I believe McDermott is of the opinion that he is always funny).

Each of the characters is odd in some way, but not too much effort has been gone to. McDermott himself is suited up in a fluffy white bear suit, another wears a white contact lens, one has a black mask kinda like what you would have seen on someone's face in Eyes Wide Shut (1999), but more like one that you would buy at a supermarket. Thankfully McDermott's enormous hands are hidden by the bear suit, because those things are creepy.

pearly gives this movie 6 out of 10.
Review created on Tue 14 Sep 2004

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Number of reviews: 1
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Reader comments

  1. It's great! Just the way I like it. I live in Norway, hope there's a way I can get it.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Julie on Sat 12 Mar 2005 04:02 #

  2. Watched this on a short film show, late at night on saturday. At first I didn't understand what it was but it kept on getting better.
    I really liked how it was told as a storybook, added to the fantasy effect. Sara Groen was really good in this film, didn't know her from anything else but Saturday Disney. I'm glad I watched it.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Gareth on Thu 14 Apr 2005 20:50 #

  3. I loved this short film, Paul McDermott is one ultra talented man! I loved the costumes, the cast, the production.. it is just fun to watch!

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Lou on Fri 17 Jun 2005 21:29 #

  4. What the hell was that?

    Paul, I'm sorry you've started taking drugs and it's warped your view of things, but seriously, what was that?

    Give me me 15 minutes back.

    Rating given: 1

    A comment from Zivko on Tue 26 Jul 2005 20:41 #

  5. Pearly, The Scree was never intended to be funny - it is your own fault if you went in with that idea and came out disappointed. Put aside your own feelings about Paul's more high-profile comedy work and just enjoy the short film as a work of art.

    Rating given: 8

    A comment from Skip on Wed 10 Dec 2008 10:37 #

  6. I love the Scree, both the film and the book, and whilst it was not meant to be hilarious I did find myself haveing a quite chuckle now and then. The emotion I felt most strongly was a small amount of fear! The writing is excellent and... Paul doesn't have big hands, hairy yes, big no! They are little like the rest of him.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Kimberly on Mon 21 Sep 2009 14:11 #

Those who have commented give this movie: 8.17 (6 ratings)

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