One More for the Road (2013)
Review by Jude Felton
Much to my chagrin I have neglected the short film format of late, for no other reason than there are only so many hours in the day. However, One More for the Road is one new short that I could not turn down the chance to watch and review. The main reasons being that it is directed by Navin Ramaswaran, who was the editor on the terrific Familiar flick from Fatal Pictures, and also that it was written and produced by Kelly Michael Stewart. My expectations were high for this one.
One More for the Road focuses on a young couple, Bill and Diane, on a road trip. He’s taking his wife away to a bed and breakfast for some much needed rest. However, it soon becomes apparent that not all is good between the couple. Little jabs at each other here and there; there’s definitely something rotten in Denmark. To say much more would be to spoil the impact of this methodically ferocious and dark little movie. Suffice to say, it does take an exceptionally dark turn.
The pacing of One More for the Road is nigh-on perfect, and Ramaswaran’s editing skills really come into play here, as he edited as well as directed the film. There’s a slow and measured approach taken in this 17 minute short that slowly pulls you in, before sucker punching you in the gut. Mind you, this isn’t a film that sets out to shock, far from it in fact. It certainly takes a violent turn, and will have you squirming in your seat, but the violence is just the product of the situation, rather than the focal point.
The cast of Jeff Sinasac, as Bill, and Lindsay Smith, as Diane, are spot on, both being incredibly convincing in their respective roles. Of course, I have seen Smith in the quite wonderful In the House of Flies, so this should come as no surprise. But, a cast is only as good as the material they are given, and it is here that the film excels. The script is witty and sharp, and very dark, and the execution of the film is wonderful; even within the short running time there is no rush to get to the pay-off. As I mentioned, One More for the Road takes the measured approach, with the first two thirds slowly toying with you, before a final third that laughs at you in its wickedly violent and dark humorous outcome.
At the time of writing this review, I believe that One More for the Road is in the process of being submitted to some film festivals, and I wish it all the best, as it is quite excellent. For you, my fiendish readers, I suggest you keep an out for it playing at a festival near you, as you won’t be disappointed. One More for the Road is simply terrific, and surpassed my already high expectations.
You can keep up to date with One More for the Road at its Official Facebook page.