Jim -- Film Review



Alternating between three distinct time frames in its interweaving of its depictions of its title character's existential despair and a futuristic society populated by human clones, Jeremy Morris-Burke's debut feature takes on far more than it can comfortably handle.

Although "Jim" displays no shortage of imagination and thematic ambition, its writer-director simply lacks the technical and storytelling skills necessary to effectively convey his overly convoluted tale.

Jim (Dan Illian) is on the verge of suicide, unable to find employment -- his plight depicted in a tedious series of ill-fated job interviews -- and despondent over wife Susan's (Vanessa Morris-Burke) recent death. Haunted by flashbacks of his previously happy life, he decides to seek out the services of a biotech firm to use her frozen eggs to create a specially engineered, genetically superior offspring.

Cut to the distant future in which we are introduced to #3774, a slave clone (Abigail Savage) who exhibits an atypical awareness of her plight after experiencing visions of Jim. Naturally, this doesn't please the mysterious despotic leader (Michael Strelow) intent on preserving his society's repressive order.

Marred by clumsy storytelling, uneven performances and cheaply generated, poorly rendered CGI effects, "Jim" squanders its undeniable potential to explore serious cautionary issues with its unwieldy blending of contemporary social drama and dystopian science fiction.

Opened: Friday, Oct. 8 (Area 23a)
Production: Tinmouth Films, Jim and Susan
Cast: Dan Illian, Vanessa Morris-Burke, Abigail Savage Michael Strelow
Director-screenwriter-cinematographer-editor: Jeremy Morris-Burke
Producers: Vanessa Morris-Burke, Jeremy Morris-Burke, Kristina Szandtner
Production designers: Michael Byrnes, Suzanne Wang
Music: Alexandre Tannous
Costume designer: Rabiah Troncelliti
No rating, 106 minutes