Boys! From the UK, “The Confession,” a quiet 9-year-old’s fear of his first confession is a neatly observed slice of boy’s life about guilt and temptation that suggests Tanel Toom has a commercial career in the immediate offing. From Ireland, “The Crush,” features an 8-year-old boy (played by director Michael Creagh’s son) challenging his second-grade school teacher’s boyfriend to a duel to the death in a punchline much shorter than the short. “Wish 143,” from the UK, in which a dying 15-year-old boy asks for a wish from a charity, shows tact and skill in evading sentimentality while noting that the desire for an hour with a naked woman beats Disney World any day of life. Belgium’s “Na Wewe,” boasts feature-level production values, as well as feature-length thematic confusion like many a movie in its political and satirical ambition. Luke Matheny’s black-and-white “God of Love,” working from the conceit of a magic packet of darts that can cause anyone to fall in love for a few short hours, shows good humor and admirable charm with modest means. It’s beaming and brimming with pleasure. 106m. (Ray Pride)
“The Oscar Nominated Short Films 2010 Live Action” opens Friday at Landmark Century.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.