Short Film Review “Inside Job”

 

   

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First, the Recap:

To be an intern. When striving to seek out what could potentially be a future in your chosen field, there might not be any better objective than to score an internship with a company focused on exactly that. The excitement, the anticipation of learning opportunities in a professional environment, among veteran staff who could one day become mentors—it’s the whole package. At least, it should be, right? Young intern Josh (Chris Cook) has gained said chance via BTC Gateways, a travel company. Despite some initial hesitations due to the–unknown–fate of his friend Al who interned before him, company line tow-ers Dick (Harold Tarr), Connie (Inga Leps), and Don (Craig Watson) insure Josh all is good and well at BTC.

Of course, what Josh soon becomes privy to is that the company CEO, Mr. G (Matt Nagin), is a complete and utter looney-tune, whose idea of running the organization seems to be more about either fraternizing with women on his staff or hookers if need be, doing drugs, and basically making everyone’s life a living hell. As Josh gets tossed into this chaotic fray, it soon becomes apparent BTC may not be the place for him, even as everyone around him tries to sell the insanity as “normal” and part of the gig. As events begin to seriously spiral out of control, it’s up to Josh to take a stand or succumb to the madness. Yet, is all as it really appears to be?

Next, my Mind:

Again we venture into the world of dark comedy via the indie film road, and there is no doubt left in the viewer’s mind here that writer/director/co-producer/co-editor Nagin’s short film ode to the likes of “The Wolf Of Wall Street” is indeed pitch black in its irreverent, crass dialogue and gritty, over-the-top imagery and general execution. As many might know, this particular style of comedic effort falls outside this reviewer’s personal preferences/tolerances, more so when taken to this much of an extreme degree, so it was difficult to find true entertainment out of it, even though certain moments involving watching Josh’s reactions to the “sales pitch” given to him for the position and his subsequent responses once he’s losing his mind in the midst of it all is witty. Also, I will give props to the clever twist of a finale provided here. But still, the air of obscenity, while understanding why this was the approach, just wasn’t for me.

Now, as I’ve commented about in prior instances involving modern comedy taken to the edge, there’s a skill in enacting characters involved with such endeavors, and that was no exception here. Cook is quite effective as poor intern Josh, a normal guy who just wants to have a regular chance to prove himself in a corporate setting and perhaps win a job and even respect. Watching as his demeanor of skeptical confidence is systematically broken down is quite hilarious because it’s so goofy, leading up to the end where things take a decidedly different turn. Nagin is totally nut job/psycho/mental case as Mr. G, a totally unscrupulous cad whose entire M.O. is pretty much shock and awful, being about one of the most heinous individuals one could meet and about every facet possible. Seeing his sick escapades and habits while maltreating those under him is both hard to watch and yet freakily engaging, which is a tribute to Nagin’s solid delivery.

Supporting turns by Tarr as an elder statesman of the company who tries to be a voice of reason during Josh’s recruitment but then turns out to be something more, Leps as Connie, a supremely forward woman who pretty much will actually do about anything or anyone to get ahead, and Watson as another office exec who aids in convincing Josh to take the internship, knowing full well what the poor slob is walking into. Additional turns are found here from Bob Bell as Colin, Samantha Algieri as one of Mr. G’s playthings, along with Melissa Joyce, Julie Kanan, Frank Vignola, Sunny Chen, and Michael Leifman. In total, “Inside Job” will have an audience no questions asked, as it certainly provides the comedic stylings popular in many of today’s current efforts within the genre. While it didn’t gain a fan in this reviewer, it’s still stands as a work of independent filmmaking passion, which can still be respected regardless of specific opinion. Oh, and we all might want to seriously watch out for rubber chicken abuse while we’re at it.

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

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