‘The Ventriloquist’ is a fantastic short film written and directed by Benjamin Leavitt and staring Kevin Spacey. The film came about as part of a wonderful competition set-up by Trigger Street Productions (‘The Social Network’ and ‘21’) and sponsored by Jameson Whiskey. Designed to uncover up-and-coming film talent, the competition asked people in South Africa, Russia and the USA to submit a 7 page script and the winning three entries got to make their short – each one staring Kevin Spacey.
It’s a wonderful idea and the shorts really don’t disappoint. Leavitt’s film is particularly great. It tells the story of an introverted ventriloquist (Spacey) who tries to match wits with his outspoken marionette. What works so well in Leavitt’s film is how it deals with the difficulties of communication. In a world of e-mail, texts, tweets and every-other form of modern communication it’s not too hard to form a connection with Spacey’s character and to empathize with the difficulties he has simply talking to people face-to-face. In this sense, we could all be viewed as being like ventriloquists from time-to-time. Make sure to put some time aside and watch this film.
You can also view the other two great shorts on Jameson Whiskey’s YouTube page. They come well recommended!