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The Robbery – by Jim Cummings

After Thunder Road, another dark comedy where a robbery doesn't go so well

2016 | 5 - 10 | Black Comedy | Life & Society | Live-Action | USA

After winning the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival 2016 with Thunder Road, Jim Cummings renews his participation to the 2017 edition with his new short film, The Robbery. This short confirms the director’s passion for black comedy. The story, written in collaboration with his friend Dustin Hahn, was inspired by a real life episode that Hahn told Jim. A friend of Dustin, under the influence of drugs, robbed a liquor store and then tried to use a taxi as a get-away car.

The same strategy is implemented by Crystal, the leading character of The Robbery. There isn’t a taxi but a passage with Uber, there are the effects of drugs and a clumsy robbery. A typical sort of idiot-criminal farce. Cummings duplicates the same style of Thunder Road in this new work – a contrast of narrative genres that displaces the viewer. The story of the main character, played by the talented Rae Gray, is painfully funny. In a dramatic situation, while dangerous darts float in the air, Crystal has an unnatural superficial attitude. She talks incessantly as she is addicted to her mobile. The events are falling and she has a naive unawareness. We’re laughing at Crystal yet we’re feeling empathy and tenderness for her.

Jim chooses again a single take to film The Robbery, but unlike his previous short film, his new work is more articulated and complex. The movements of the camera are more involved, the action becomes more composed as Crystal’s ill-conceived plan goes awry. The same characterization of the main character is much more in-depth, with a representation of different emotional states. Cummings was commissioned by Fullscreen to make one of the single-take shorts for the video streaming service and The Robbery is just the first of the series, titled The Minutes Collection. We do not exclude that due to his growing popularity, Cummings could transfer his style into a feature film very soon.

Chiara Pascali

Chiara Pascali

Digital Strategist. Particolare inclinazione verso la continua ricerca del nuovo e del bello. Cinema, letteratura e musica i linguaggi che preferisco per sondare la realtà che mi circonda.

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