The Pod (2006) – By Duane L. Martin

 The Pod is a short film by director Jeremiah Kipp that involves a couple on the verge of breaking up and a pod full of green juice that has the ability to either bring them closer together or destroy them completely.

Caroline has decided to take a new job in a different city, which means that her boyfriend Jonas will have to close up his tattoo parlor and go with her if they’re going to stay together.  They’ve been having problems though and are on the verge of breaking up.  In a last ditch effort to keep their relationship together, Jonas obtains "the pod", which contains a liquid that must be taken when you’re in the company of the person you’re in a relationship with, otherwise it can have really bad consequences.

He brings the pod home and tries to get her to take it with him, but she resists.  Finally, he takes his dose and leaves.  He calls her from somewhere all tripped out and tells her he’s not coming back until she takes her dose.  She lies and said she took it, but he knows she didn’t, and eventually she gives in and takes it, which involves cutting open the end of the pod, pulling out the liquid with an eyedropper and dripping it into your eyes.

So she takes her dose, and suddenly she starts tripping out.  She finally gets Jonas on the phone and finds out where he is and heads out to find him.  Along the way, she starts trippin’ balls really bad and hallucinating something fierce.  It’s a trippy trip, but eventually she finds Jonas.  Now here’s where we get to the part I don’t really understand.

He’s got a knife, and something happens.  They end up in a clutch together and then when they back away from each other, she’s got his ear in her hand and he’s laying on the ground bleeding.  At this point in the film, I became highly confused about what was going on.  At the end it shows them like holding each other close, but that’s just a hallucination.  They’re really all bloody and he’s all messed up, which made me feel like I was trippin’ balls.

The Pod is well shot and not only has a great look, but great sound as well.  You can actually hear everything everyone is saying.  One of my biggest pet peeves is when I see a film with a dialogue track that I can’t follow because it’s poorly recorded or getting drowned out by pointless music.  Those problems didn’t exist in this film at all.

The editing was tight and kept the story moving along nicely.  There was just enough there to tell the story without any bloat.  This film didn’t need to be longer than nineteen minutes to tell the story, and it was perfectly cut together to do just that.  So many directors can fall into the trap of adding pointless filler to their films just to stretch out the length.  You’ll find none of that here, and Mr. Kipp is to be commended for that.

While the ending is a bit confusing, the look and technical quality of this film is undeniable.  It’s a great piece of work from a director who really knows his craft.

The film is currently being shown at various film festivals.  If you’d like to find out more about The Pod, check out the film’s MySpace page at http://www.myspace.com/podmovie.