Shorts

  • Year:2009
  • Rating:PG
  • Director:Robert Rodriguez
  • Cast:Jimmy Bennett, Kat Dennings, Trevor Gagnon, Jake Short
  • Release Date:September 03, 2009
  • Distributor:Roadshow
  • Running time:89 minutes
  • Film Worth:$12.00
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

The frantic pace and sense of humour should entertain every kid that sees this film, with a nice added moral lesson for kids and adults alike.

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Director Robert Rodriguez seems to have a split personality. One minute he's the king of the kids with films like The Adventures Of Shark Boy And Lava Girl, and the next minute, he's making gritty, violent films with Quentin Tarantino. With his latest film, Shorts, Rodriguez is out of the grindhouse and back squarely in kid territory.

The story is told in a series of bite-sized shorts, narrated out of sequential order by eleven-year-old Toby "Toe" Thompson (Jimmy Bennett). Toe's family live in the company town of Black Hall, where work-obsessed adults try to please the nasty Mr. Black (James Spader), head of Black Box Industries. Daily life in the town is generally boring, until a multi-coloured magic rock falls from the sky, wreaking havoc with its power to grant wishes.

There's enough gross out humour and slapstick action in Shorts to keep even the most easily distracted kid entertained, and the fun is balanced with a healthy dose of moral lessons. Along the way, the characters learn to be careful about what they wish for, the importance of teamwork, and why you should never pick your nose, lest a giant booger man comes to get you! Adults don't escape unscathed either, with pointed lessons about work taking over family time, and how technology shouldn't replace human communication.

Though the subject matter isn't anything new, Rodriguez' use of the five shorts gives the film a snappy freshness, apparently inspired by the way his own children use a remote control to flick through TV channels. The pace can be quite frantic at times; kids will have no trouble keeping up with the ADD-style storyline, but parents may need to lie down afterwards.

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