Tribeca Film Festival '17: "Big City" Review

Photo courtesy of Tribeca Film Festival

Photo courtesy of Tribeca Film Festival

If Tom Cruise’s Vincent were a nice guy in 2004’s "Collateral", then directors Jordan Bond and Lachlan Ryan’s “Big City” could possibly be the short version of the film (minus guns and shootouts). Vijay (Gurvinder Singh Atwal) is a lonely taxi driver working the streets of Melbourne, Australia at night. After picking up Chris (Chris Fortuna), a seemingly good-hearted drunk, a friendship grows.

The short is a good exercise in establishing characters quickly and tapping into the universal pain and humor in life. Whether exploring Vijay’s ridicule as a minority in Melbourne, or playing a harmless joke on a would-be rider, the film has its’ heartfelt moments. The cinematography of the film really draws you into the city night life, which helps to amplify the film’s morning after conclusion. 

There are a few moments in the short that feel a little forced, perhaps due to Atwal’s performance. However, the message of true human connection and the lack there of is certainly felt. Check it out if you have time!



Kevin Sampson

The fact that Kevin Sampson is not just a film critic, but a writer, producer, and director as well makes his understanding of cinema even better. Coming from a theoretical and hands on approach, he understands both sides of the struggle of viewing and creating great works. After receiving an MFA in Film & Electronic Media from American University in Washington, D.C in 2011, Kevin took his love for film to the next level by creating and producing Picture Lock, an entertainment website, podcast, and hour long film review TV show that runs on Arlington Independent Media’s public access station in Arlington, VA. The show covers new releases, classic films, and interviews with local filmmakers in the DMV area. He is also a member of the Washington DC Area Film Critics Association and African American Film Critics Association. He is currently looking forward to filming his first feature film in the near future. He believes that film is one of the most powerful art forms in the world, and he hopes that he can use the craft to inspire others and make a difference in it.