SUPER SPREE is a short film from 2011 directed by Matt Post and produced by Drewstone productions in association with Bora Bora Films, it is set in a supermarket and follows the story of Billy (James Manzello), a young shelf stacker tired of being constantly bullied by his co-workers who abuse him and knock over the tin can pyramids that he seems to spend forever making. The cinematography is soft, with low saturation and a shallow depth of field use that I believe goes beyond being merely artistic. Billy’s unfocussed surroundings seem to show him in his own little world, as if everything else around him is muted while he works, delicately constructing his displays of canned goods. I feel that such a trivial and mundane activity represents a much larger issue regarding workers never being appreciated for what they spend a lot of time doing, as well as exploring themes of escapism and reflecting upon the fact that Billy is trying to get away from the the loneliness and repression that he experiences on a daily basis.
There is some creative text use, with the scrolling opening credits running as if they were on one of the till’s conveyer belts, disappearing underneath as they reach the counter. The bright, colourful and visually stimulating environment of the the supermarket is an engaging subject for such a distinct filming style and its creative visual manipulation of the environment generates some imaginative and well composed shots. The dynamic use of slow motion contributes a degree of professionalism to the piece, while allowing the scenes in question to be viewed with enhanced detail by the audience. The diegetic sound effects that were included worked well in creating the bustling environment of a busy supermarket, with the staff room having a more repetitive and dull background noise to it.
The friendly, inviting shop floor location contrasts well against the dark and dingy back room, which I think represents the two sides of a supermarket worker’s personality. The cheery and helpful persona that they adopt while working in the presence of the public, and the lonely, depressed reality that they hide. Despite the slightly tedious subject matter, the movie is scattered with comedic moments – most of which occur when Billy meets a lazy co-worker outside who is smoking and starts to hang out with him. This slightly slow moving story also takes a surreal turn near the end when Billy decides to get his revenge on the colleagues who have been mistreating him. Overall, an amusing and insightful story with an exciting, unexpected resolution.Super Spree,