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The Independent Critic

Timothy J. Cox, Oise Ohiwerei, David P.B. Stephens
Zachary Halfter
Zachary Halfter (Story), Stephen Pavlics
15 Mins.


 "Solutions" the Debut Feature from Zachary Halfter 

Solutions is the latest short film to feature indie actor Timothy J. Cox, a regular contributor to The Independent Critic with a wide range of indies, mostly shorts, ranging from the truly sublime to the just plain godawful. 

Solutions, the first film from director Zachary Halfter, is stuck somewhere in the middle. 

In the film, Cox portrays James Cross, a not so popular businessman who decides to run for mayor against a far more popular opponent. Determined to improve his chances, Cross hires Derek Price (David P.B. Stephens), a fixer, to, well, improve the odds of a victory. Derek, in turn, has decided it's a good time to bring his son, Damon (Oise Ohiwerei), into the business in a fine example of baptism by fire. 

A nearly 20-minute short, Solutions has a wistfully nostalgic feeling to it courtesy of Derek's fondly shared narration recalling his early days in the biz. Cox proves to be capably smarmy, not far removed from another certain popular politician with historically low popularity numbers. It's an approach that mostly works, though the film's slightly uneven sound mix occasionally leaps into disrupting that sense of nostalgia. 

Solutions is a solid debut effort from Halfter, a film that pretty much plays out how you expect and never really draws you in but also never really pushes you away. Occasionally involving, Solutions is at its best when Cox is going at it and, fortunately, that's rather often in this nearly 20-minute effort. You can check the film out for yourself above. 

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic