Stars: Gabriel Diani and Janet Varney
|This film was an official selection at the Phoenix Film Festival in Phoenix in 2014. Here's an index to my reviews of 2014 films.|
In this, Garewal is less a director and more of a conductor. If each character is an instrument, he allows all of them to play but controls how they do so with panache. I could almost see him as a shadow behind the screen, immediately letting Alex and Cynthia solo with facial expressions over the litany of the priest who is about to marry them, only to let Bryan, the best man, set the tone with a cautionary note and another Alex leap in with the first in a set of themes to duel it out for supremacy like an orchestral tug of war. You see, actor Gabriel Diani, who plays Alex, is all over this film like a rash, because there are a whole bunch of Alexes. The first has come back from the future to plead to his earlier self to not marry Cynthia. A mere moment later, another blips into being to plead with him to marry her after all, and then a third reiterates the message of the first. What's a poor bridegroom-to-be to do? Well, Garewal isn't remotely done and he keeps escalating things until nobody in the audience can fairly claim not to have been overwhelmed.
Genre audiences should count down the days before Garewal puts this short online. I'm sure it'll get there in the end, because it was successfully crowdfunded on Kickstarter, where it had the most appropriate $1 pledge of any campaign. For a film that revolves around a time war being unleashed at a wedding, how's this for a promise? 'We'll go back in time and reverse your most embarrassing moment!' Neat, huh? Well, it continues in a fashion that could have been included in the script. 'Because of how time travel works, you won't know that this was done. Think about the most embarrassing moment in your life. Know that, at one point in time, this was actually your second most embarrassing moment, 'cause you gave us a buck, and we changed your life.' No wonder they reached their Kickstarter goal! After all, if they hadn't, they'd have just gone back in time and changed it up until they did, right? I liked Garewal's previous film, BlamBlamBlam, ClickClickClick, but this is a leap forward and I'd love to time travel to see what's next.
Update: Present Tense is available to watch for free on YouTube.