Tackling topics from Christmas shopping to The Waltons, Pure Product is a series of 12 short films taking an off-kilter look at modern American culture. Divided into two programmes, this quirky dozen ranges from the witty (Exchange Policy) to the downright weird (Migration Of The Blubberoids). Most are experiments in artistic form so those looking for straight storytelling might find these goods a little hard to consume. But viewers with a taste for the left-field should definitely consider a purchase.
The first programme, No Place Like Home, opens with an attention-grabber for film buffs: Why Don't You Love Me?, an amusing and unsettling medley of motherly moments from Hitchcock movies (Psycho included, obviously). Then there are the kitsch stylings of The Pharaoh's Belt and Alpsee, and the prose-driven Back East, a tale of growing pains in New York. The Waltons mounts an arty deconstruction of one of TV's most famous families, while Migration Of The Blubberoids is even more off the wall: a montage of banal suburban scenes set to a score straight out of a 50s sci-fi epic.
"A WRY LOOK AT THE CRAZINESS OF CHRISTMAS"
Meanwhile Programme Two explores dreams (Yes? Oui? Ja?), mass media imagery (We The Normal; I Am Crazy And You're Not Wrong) and the secret life of Superman's pal Jimmy Olson (Pony Glass). We Edit Life catches the eye with its collage-based celebration of science, but the best of the bunch is Exchange Policy, which takes a wry look at the craziness of Christmas consumerism. A cross between Watchdog and Jackass, it's a mini-documentary that deserves to be super-sized into a full feature film.