blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Winston (1987, Steven Soderbergh)

Watching Soderbergh’s first film, Winston, it’s interesting to see what he continued developing and what didn’t exactly make it.

There’s some lovely ambient music here, as Soderbergh opens the film gently, with his two protagonists on the steps of some building at a university. Most of the film is shot around an unnamed university and it’s not quite clear how it figures in to the characters’ lives. Presumably, at least the woman—played by Sherrill Ducharme—attends it or teaches there.

Winston primarily concentrates on one of her suitors, played by David Jensen. She tells him he has a rival and the whole thing starts wearing him down. Soderbergh has a lengthy, beautifully shot (if dramatically questionable) dream sequence in the center of the short.

Soderbergh’s script is better than the performances he gets from Jensen and Ducharme. Both are fine, but the script is even better.

Winston’s nearly perfect.

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