Cerritosis (2007) – By Duane L. Martin

 Cerritosis is a short film by Steven Cerritos in which a guy named Roach Far has been stricken with the brain ailment, Cerritosis, which causes hallucinations, schizophrenia and paranoia…and that’s about it.  That’s literally all it’s about.

See, this is basically an art film.  The narration is in Japanese (with English subtitles) even though none of the characters look Japanese, and the rest of the film is filled with artsy visuals and slick editing.  There is however virtually no real story outside of this guy walking around hallucinating and suffering from severe paranoia.  You could say it’s almost like watching someone’s nightmare.

What the film lacks in story, it makes up for in visuals.  Visually, it’s a really nice looking film with great effects and the nightmarish visuals really take you into a nightmarish world of hallucinations.  Unfortunately, however nice the film looks, the lack of a real story will limit the audience that would appreciate it.  Some people like artsy films, while others don’t.  I’m personally sort of, "middle of the road" on them.  If it’s done well, I usually find them to be really cool to watch, because I love all things bizarre.  However, in this case, I was leaning more toward boredom through most of it.  This isn’t really the fault of the film so much as it is the fault of what it had to be.  It was supposed to be nightmarish, and it was.  It was also however rather disjointed at times because of this and I found that I was having a hard time getting into it in certain parts.  There was one scene in particular that had me looking for the fast forward button, in which a guy in a mask was filmed in a bizarre fashion while music played.  It was simply pointless and far too long.

There were however some fun scenes as well.  One scene had Roach sitting on a bench, and a Microsoft employee came and sat down next to him to eat his lunch.  They had a rather bizarre conversation with Roach talking about how he’d like to meet Bill Gates and be friends with him.  The other guy eventually got weirded out and left, leaving Roach to start talking about some conspiracy Bill Gates had against him.  It was a rather entertaining scene.

The Japanese dialogue would have worked better had the actors actually been Japanese.  I understand why it was done, and on some level I guess it achieved the desired effect, but on another level it didn’t.

I guess what it comes down to is, if you like bizarre art films, then you’ll probably enjoy this one quite a bit.  If you’re more into plots and solid stories, then you’ll probably want to give this one a pass.  It all depends on which side of the fence you’re on.  As I said earlier, I’m sort of in the middle.

If you’d like to find out more about this film, you can visit the film’s website at http://www.enityfilms.com.