I considered just using a headshot of David Rees Snell for the header image.
P.1 (1999) dir. Seth Wiley
You may be shocked/puzzled to learn I’ve been looking for this short to surface online off and on for the past two and a half years, ever since I first featured a short starring David Rees Snell aka Detective Ronnie Gardocki aka The Solute’s collective Shield crush. The fact that I discovered it via the semi-obvious place of the director’s website should not take away from the accomplishment.
Whether this kind of effort (or “effort,” since that word should apply to things greater than recombining Google search terms) is worth the result I leave to the viewer to decide. For its virtues, I point to the gradual escalation of the concept until the end result is almost – almost – logical, at least until cold water gets thrown on it. In the minus column… it entirely depends on how amusing you find that end result. As previously discussed, shorts have the ability to explore single punchlines or twists that couldn’t carry a feature. P.1 needs no more padding, but at least its tempo puts this on a shelf above a juvenile skit version.
The interplay between the actors is constructed well considering one of them is giving a voice-only performance (Carrie Hamilton of TV’s Fame!) In this regard the film is wise to keep Snell mute (oddly, The Shield would take this strategy for its first season). It’s easy to imagine a version where Snell talks back, turning it into either battle of the sexes nonsense or ickier territories. Having the car do all the speaking means the film’s magical element defines the reality and Snell’s character is left to sort out the nature of the scenario he’s stepped into. Is this the Audi of short films? Maybe not, but I hope it gives you a Thursday midday chuckle.