NYIFF 2017 Short Film Review “The Hideout”



First, the Recap:

The seemingly endless abyss that is the world of the underappreciated. Whether in life or career pursuits, perhaps even both, there’s nothing quite like the deeply frustrating agony in feeling that no one wants to take you seriously or give due credit when earned. So, of course, there’s only one solution–flee. For Sammy Kaur (Rippin Sindher), this ugly reality unfolds on a daily basis despite having the fantastical wishes and fantasies of eluding said vexation by being in the wonderfully colorful and musically freeing world of a Bollywood film–the dancing, the singing, the gorgeous clothing, the happiness–it’s all there.

Enjoying said visions until the real world beckons via her AM alarm, Sammy desperately longs for being valued as the mundane routine of a fresh, but sadly stale, day begins.  Despite the well-intentioned, innocently delivered, yet somewhat clichéd platitudes of her neighbor Miss Patty (Melody Trice) every morning like clockwork, Sammy then opens a letter before heading out one day that shakes her to the core. Arriving to work late, then facing the “graciousness” of haughty boss Mr. Brecker (Greg Standifer), it all becomes the wake-up call Sammy needs to realize perhaps its time to take flight and own her destiny.

Next, my Mind:

A totally charismatic, lovable, enchanting, and one hundred percent relatable effort, director/co-writer/co-producer/actress Sindher presents this hysterically accurate and ultimately affecting/inspiring ode to everything we as “normal” people so often find ourselves desiring to do–completely abscond from reality and place ourselves in a better, more fulfilling life/world than the one we have. The beauty of this narrative’s execution is that it isn’t in any way trying to say don’t be thankful for what you DO have, but rather stand up firmly for your goals, aspirations, and dreams, while also being unwilling to let the negative factors and hesitations being experienced hold us back. Utilizing the themes of nighttime and daytime dreaming, the so often “perfect” scenarios found in films, truly horrible bosses, unreservedly thankless jobs, and the spectre of a non-viable future, the cleverness to illustrate all of this here is whimsically engaging and, again, so undeniably true! The music score and visual lushness of dream sequences vs. the “plain” look of the real world is very effectively used here.

Sindher is decisively uproarious and conclusively spot on in her role as Sammy, a regular girl encountering a regular life so outright devoid of any true sense of who she wants to be, other than what she undergoes in the pipe-dream-centered reveries she concocts and pines to see become actuality (well, most of them anyway), that the evident hopelessness and misery she meets on a daily basis only serves to make the primary choice in the finale that much more definite and impactful. Watching Sammy’s journey through this unchanging pattern then suddenly enact a “the sky’s the limit” transformation is well-played and realistically portrayed by Sindher. Supporting turns are enjoyable from Trice as the positive vibe sharing, sage advice speaking neighbor Miss Patty, who one can tell Sammy appreciates, yet at times might be a tad put off by, and Standifer as Mr. Brecker, the quintessential overbearing, ego-driven, “I do it all” office kingpin whose flippant attitude makes you want to just punch the guy, hence indicating how well Standifer play it.

In total, “The Hideout” is another high quality, delightful, humorous, yet deftly meaningful short film that, while entertaining the viewer wholeheartedly, challenges them to take a look at what dreams they desire to pursue and then ask themselves–am I willing to face the odds, overcome the frustrations, believe in myself, what I am capable of, and take that first leap into the unknown for the sake of discovering new, more worthwhile achievement and success?  This reviewer can unequivocally relate to the premise and is living the results of taking those first, amazingly affirming steps himself. So now folks–how about you?

As always, this is all for your consideration and comment.  Until next time, thank you for reading!


Leave a Reply