Review – EIFF 2013 – Dummy Jim

 

Film: Dummy Jim

Director: Matt Hulse

Production:

Writers: Matt Hulse

Main Cast: Jim Dore

Screen Dates: Thu 20 June 20:55 Cineworld Fri 21 June 20:35 Cineworld

 

Rating: Walk out.

 

Before entering, I really wanted to like this, enthralled by its premise and the potential to see a Scottish film that evoked a sense of adventure, quirkiness and willpower, instead what was presented was a somewhat obtuse student like art film that was left wanting like Donald Trump’s hairline.

It starts off with the subject Dummy Jim, (Jim Dore), curiously observing and pinching biscuits at a village hall fare. Without much explanation of his motivation, Dummy Jim sets off on his two-wheeled voyage. The director decides to use a mix-match of archaic footage, documenting school children narrating Jim’s diary, Jim Dore acting out different scenarios and long tedious shots of a woman knitting or someone cutting a stone. I was left hoping the knitting needles would become 3D and stab me in the eyes to save me from the torture. Okay, unconventional, non-traditional, alternative filmmaking, will not attract or excite a mass audience, however I believe a film should strive to reach a facet of either being entertaining, informative, or mesmeric and Dummy Jim scored a blank on all three. The only hook of the film was its premise but any film must provide a hook in itself. The intro provided no insight into who Jim is other than where he was from and that he was dumb, nothing of his inner-workings, his desire or what drove him to such a challenge. Twenty plus minutes in, there was no sign of anything to convince me to stay, nor for some other audience members who equally dispersed and I somewhat suspect that nothing else developed other than someone finishing a woolly jumper.