Title: II

Also known as:

Year: 2015

Genre: Short / Experimental / Occult

Language: English

Runtime: 3 min

Director: Benito Duran

Writer: Benito Duran


A woman prays to the light, and begins to undress before it as if to give herself away.

Our thoughts:
It's really impossible to give Benito Duran's "II" a standard review, because it is not a standard film. It feels more like as if a filmmaker who has never made a film before, has short a series of shots and then goes crazy with filtering, sound and effects. It is whatever it is, and I'm not sure that the filmmaker even made it with a very clear idea. As stated in the brief exchange with the filmmaker, this was an attempt at atmosphere and being weird. Let's try and digest this 3 minute short film for what it is, or potentially could be:

It starts out with a shot of a woman standing in a kitchen, and raising an ankh towards the ceiling. Does the symbolism that the ankh represent matter? I don't know, but for a second we can pretend that it does. It's the breath of life. Cut to shots of a hand crawling over a wall, a hand with the word "slave" written on it, a woman sitting on the floor with a donkey mask on her head, close-up shots of teeth. The woman is then standing by a corner in a living room, and a light is shining from the top corner. She undresses before it, and gives herself to the light. Jump to some more random shots.

"II" doesn't say much, it doesn't show much, and it doesn't really seem to try much. But it is something. It's an experiment by a filmmaker who probably hasn't made much before. I'd argue that it's not a short film that should be sent out for review as much as it should be shown around to friends for some criticism and tips. It appears to be way too underdeveloped to be reviewed. Yet here I am.

Benito Duran could definitely make interesting experimental shorts in the future, but "II" was presented to me with such low resolution (240p) and I am not sure there is higher quality available. This ruins the potential of being a visually beautiful experiment, as it's very pixelated and blurry. Still, I can't help to enjoy experiments like this and hope that Bentio Duran works harder on his craft in the future. I can relate to this sort of filmmaking, but there is not enough meat on its bones.

Positive things:
- It's experimenting, so you don't need to follow rules.
- Colorful!

Negative things:
- Even though it is an experiment, it feels way too random and underdeveloped to actually be interesting.

Gore: 0/5
Nudity: 2.5/5
Story: 0.5/5
Effects: 0.5/5
Comedy: 2/5

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