J.B. Spins

Jazz, film, and improvised culture.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Tribeca ’13: Honeymoon Suite (short)


The Opposite House probably did not pay a promotional allowance, but it will get a heck of a plug at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.  That is because one of the short films commissioned by the chic Beijing boutique hotel was selected for the festival.  It is not hard to see why.  Zao Wang’s Honeymoon Suite (trailer here) is a small delight screening as part of the Deadbolt program at this year’s Tribeca.

This will be the first time Ally, the Opposite’s new guest services manager, will be on-duty while the mysterious Mr. Hirschfeld stays in his regular titular room.  He visits like clockwork once a month, for one night only. Even though his secret is revealed early in the film, it should not be spoiled ahead of time for those who do not guess. It is safe to say he is kind of a handful, in genre sort of way.

The director certainly does his job, making the Opposite look like quite the hip, elegant space. He also cast a first-rate ensemble.  As Ally, Zou Han-hong comes across like a smart professional, but she also has some rather touching moments down the stretch.  She certainly makes you want to check into the Opposite. 

Poor Cary Woodworth is largely buried under surprisingly impressive make-up effects, so give him credit for being a good sport.  Nadia Hatta and Xi-tian also make an endearing mother-daughter tandem in the room beneath Hirschfeld’s, with the latter providing some very cute reaction shots.

Man, if only all commercials were this fun, then we would be getting somewhere. Regardless of its origins, genre fans will be charmed by Honeymoon Suite.  Recommended for general audiences, it screens as part of the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival’s Deadbolt shorts block tonight (4/22), Saturday (4/27), and Sunday (4/28).

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