Reviewed by: Andrew Robertson

"Conveys mood and beauty ably but never quite grabs."

Robert Todd's film has light and noise, shots of people through windows, dogs, a flower. Obviously processed film belies its age. The clothes and surroundings mark it somewhere in a 40-year window of any-when. Apparently spring, garden in bloom, smiles on faces, and no dialogue, there is a degree of timelessness. Its short length manages to convey another spring day, bright colours and all. A collage, perhaps, of short scenes, it conveys mood and beauty ably but never quite grabs.

Todd has made dozens of films, indeed his website offers no fewer than 8 DVDs of short films, and it may well be the case that those more familiar with his work will appreciate Gathering more than others. We've no clues as to who, how, indeed why, though eventually the question of 'when' is settled by a glimpse of a camera.

Copy picture

It might also be the case that (as seen at EIFF 2010) it isn't in an appropriate context. Psycho has been shown frame by frame in a gallery, but works intended as installations rarely transfer to the cinema. Given Todd's impressive CV, however, it seems relatively clear that The Gathering is where it is intended to be; sadly, despite its beauty, for all its mystery, it isn't magic.

Reviewed on: 22 Sep 2010
Share this with others on...
Traces of the spring.
Amazon link

Director: Robert Todd

Year: 2009

Runtime: 4 minutes

Country: US


EIFF 2010

Search database:

If you like this, try: