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Friday, April 17, 2015

Hungarian Short Film "Blue Dream" Tells Cancer Survivor's Story

"BLUE DREAM" (2014)
Genre: Documentary
Length- 4:19
Company: Ellekes Pictures
Website: Official YouTube

"Blue Dream" comes to my laptop all the way from Hungary and is directed by Gergo Elekes, who wrote the score on another short film I've reviewed here called "Aftermath".  It tells the story of Kinga Galambos, a young Hungarian swimmer fighting her way through cancer.

It's a difficult film to review because there isn't much content to work with, but let's get right to it, shall we?

THE JOYS OF BREVITY

 It's only a little over four minutes long, and that includes credits, so really what we're looking at is maybe three minutes of screen time.  The only vocalizations throughout the film are from frequent voiceovers from Galambos.  Her accent is thick but she has a good voice and manages to convey all that she says dramatically.

Most of the film is her swimming from one end of a pool to the other, interspersed with blink or you'll miss it shots of her dealing with being sick.  Elekes obviously composed each of these shots and each is conveyed in a very emotional way without force feeding the audience what he's trying to say.

ABOVE THE SURFACE

I loved the gritty texture of the film itself, and having seen people live and die after bouts with cancer, the meaning of "Blue Dream" is admirable, but when I reached the end of the film I didn't know how I felt about it.  There's not really any story here -- the credits say there was a screenplay, and it was written by Jozsef Gallai, but I didn't feel any particular conflict here, I didn't have a sense of a character growing before my eyes, or really a character at all.

"Blue Dream" is something like a moving motivational poster, and it works on that level.  If you're looking for something with narrative, however, you're not going to find it here.

OVERALL SCORES:

Writing: 2 / 5.  The writing works for what it's trying to do, but there's no story, no structure, and there's not much we get to know about our main character aside from the fact that she swims regularly and has fought cancer.
Directing: 3 / 5.  Elekes has created a gorgeous series of visuals that stand strong on their own two feet, and if "Blue Dream" succeeds, it is a credit to his directorial vision.
Editing: 3 / 5.  Competently done, no obvious mistakes from shot to shot.  It works.
Sound/Music: 3.5 / 5.  Gorgeous piano work from Elekes.  The music tugs at the heartstrings and is as melodic as a pop song.  The sound was also perfect -- Kinga's voice overs were perfect volume and clear as day.
Acting: N/A.

Final Grade:  2.8 / 5. 

Watch "Blue Dream" right now over at YouTube and check out Gergo Eleke's official YouTube channel here!



Thanks for reading! I'm a screenwriter and script consultant. Most recently, I've worked with LMC Productions and Mad Antz Films in Australia. I helped mold Goodybag Productions' award winning screenplay "The Teacher" and Michael Maguire's feature length script "The Wolfpack", which is still in development.

Check out my blog and let's get in touch!