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The Independent Critic

Marion Kerr, Andre Hall, Lauren Mora, Bernie Hourihan, Julia Marchese, Joe Ballarini, Emily Chiu, Andy Kallok, Casey Jean O'Brien, Hugh Aodh O'Brien, Eric Soto, America Young, Fernando Cardoso, Alissa Davis, Aaron Gorney
Brian Crewe
Marion Kerr
23 Mins.

 "Far" Review 
There's almost no higher compliment that I can offer a film than wanting to watch it again. As my time wound down with the latest short film from Film Crewe Productions, I found myself wanting to hit "replay" just to watch it all over again.

So, I did.

A film that comes from the imagination of writer/co-star Marion Kerr and director Brian Crewe, Far is a universal love story in which an ordinary boy, David (Andre Hall), meets an extraordinary girl, Hannah (Marion Kerr). The adventure that unfolds is both a little ordinary and a little extraordinary, a love story simple yet sublimely bathed within the kind of magic that the universe always seems to produce when we surrender ourselves to it.

Describing Far feels like an injustice to the film, because this is a film that demands to be experienced without expectation. Sadly, because short films are so rarely accessible to the general public, I realize that you may never encounter this film and the magic it creates within its relatively brief 23-minute running time. Perhaps a description of the film will encourage you to check it out, because check it out you should.

David, as portrayed by Andre Hall, isn't so much an uptight young man as he is a repressed one whose entire being feels like a ball of yarn longing to be unspooled. When he quite literally runs into Hannah, a simple date becomes a connection to all the magic that the world has to offer.

Marion Kerr's Hannah is a complete and utter delight, the perfect "girl next door" in a world that can be so incredibly distant and far away. So many would have chosen to portray Hannah with a bit of a "wink," but Kerr's performance is so wonderfully grounded in authenticity that Hannah becomes the girl you can't help but completely love no matter how strange her adventure with David becomes.

At first, the chemistry between David and Hannah is awkward and unsettled. Yet, it quickly becomes apparent as the two experience their first date that David's awkwardness is borne out of his absolute discomfort with the world around him while, on the other end of the spectrum, Hannah's vibrant social awkwardness is borne out of her insatiable curiosity and a determination to fully surrender herself to the world around her.

The magic that grows between David and Hannah is enhanced by Kerr's own delightfully spot-on dialogue that somehow manages to ground all of this universal wonder and magic in a deep sense of reality and truth. There's one line, in particular, towards the film's end that had a single tear running down my eye with its simplicity and sweetness.

Brian Crewe, whose collaborations with Kerr seem to always lead to cinematic magic, directs the film seemingly surrendered to both the infinite possibilities of the universe and the infinite hopes and dreams of a first date. Crewe enhances the film's sense of wonder by seemingly creating a magical universe right within the Los Angeles-based production. Locales such as the New Beverly Cinema, Norwalk's Golf n' Stuff, Santa Monica's Third Street Promenade and Pier, and his own neighborhood are used in such a way that you can't help but realize the miracle of the world that surrounds you.

D.P. George Feucht's camera work is luminous and gives the film a feeling not far removed from that of Disney's Enchanted, a feeling that grew as we watch Marion Kerr's Giselle-like wide-eyed innocence and quirky charm. The film features an original score from Darren Fung that captures both the playfulness and the wonder of the film's story, while also featuring original tunes that give the film a bit of a retro feel that serves its decidedly upbeat story quite nicely.

For more information on Far, be sure to visit the Film Crewe website linked in the credits. Already having been an official selection at 2012 Dances With Films, Far is a short film you'll want to check out when it arrives at a film festival near you.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic