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The Independent Critic

Steven Strunka, Victoria Ford
Josh Downey

 "Polysemy of Love" Review 
Polysemy -
                  a diversity of meanings for a given word.

Writer/director Josh Downey's Polysemy of Love is an experimental film centered around a man (Steven Strunka) and a woman (Victoria Ford) who are a couple, perhaps in love or perhaps simply contemplating the possibility. The two are having "the" conversation, the conversation where honest feelings are revealed and a couple decides if they are, in fact, in love. The tale is unique in that the actors are portrayed by dolls who are given voice by our actors. At times, it feels as if we've stumbled across the set for Team America: World Philosophers. It could be awkward and, for fleeting moments, it is awkward yet for the most part it works surprisingly well.

The film is shot in black and white and explores the dialogue of a a young couple. The young man seems to need regular reassurance that his mate does, in fact, really love him. The young woman, on the other hand, is more self-assured and toys, mostly tenderly, with her mate's fumbling insecurities and uncertainties.

The dialogue works from a philosophical standpoint, with Downey's film exuding a sort of meditative spirit taken out of this slice-of-life scenery. What it lacks, perhaps, is that spark of true love or passion. I wanted to find myself surrendering to these two voices within the context of the film's 3 1/2 minute running time. I enjoyed the dialogue, but seemed like even within the film's slight running time it could have reached even deeper and left a lasting impact such as what happened within another of Downey's films, One Word.

You can decide for yourself by watching the film immediately above this review.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic