FOR FILMS IN CHARGE OF CHANGE
directed by Matheus Ronn Leite
Caposhi Pop, a crime fiction film, is what a potentially cult film could look like. From the vintage looks and the American diner to Tarantino-inspired dialogues and humour, the short turns out to be entertaining and humorous, yet average in terms of originality.
The short starts out with an armed robbery of a small, common American diner, as seen by a client in the back booth. Shortly, after the animated opening credits roll in, we witness a conversation between two gangsters, a dialogue reminiscent of Tarantino’s films endless, apparently pointless talks. The chat they have over a burger reveals they’re part of a three-member gang of criminals that have robbed and occupied the diner as a cover-up for another robbery happening elsewhere.
Shot entirely inside a typical American diner, the short employs a diversity of storytelling techniques and cinematographic styles. The story is mostly told in reverse - with the exception of the closure - and with the help of flashbacks and flash forwards, variety in the point of view of the camera, animations, and voice-over. Moreover, the characters play a huge role in the unfolding of events, as their opening conversation serves as a catalyst to the building of plot.
The director’s choice of employing a wide range of filmmaking techniques helps create a fast-paced, energetic tone, that draws the viewer into the series of events and plot twists. However, as diverse as they are, there is no clear stylistic connection between techniques. The shift from a person’s point of view to an objective viewpoint appears oddly unnatural and heterogeneous. On the other hand, the frantic camera work, abrupt changes in style and perspective are done with ease. Likewise, the sound design and the lighting work help animate a crime scene atmosphere, with police sirens and flashing lights in the background. Overall, the director’s play and experimentation with filmmaking contribute to a humorous, ironic tone.
Caposhi Pop’s closure creates no confusion or doubt. The unfolding of events is explanatory enough to tell a story from beginning until end in a mix of narratives, time frames and points of view. Perhaps the least satisfying trait of the short is the fact that the closure solves all the mysteries and twists. The ending leaves no place for reflections and the film stops with the ending credits. Nevertheless, the unexpected humorous turn of events is a great asset to a round, feel-good and engaging short. The film’s amazing energy and dynamism convinced us of looking forward to Matheus Ronn Leite’s future work.