Local film Alexander the Brain is bold and dynamic

Jacob Ames plays the title character in Alexander the Brain, a short produced by Erie-based Oddity Productions.

Alexander Conroy is a bare-knuckle boxer born into the violence of the Civil War. Now, 19 years after the war, he finds himself in the same power-hungry fight his ancestors fell to, trying to assert his dominance as a force beyond pure physicality. alexander the brainOddity Productions’ first short, follows the boxer, played by Jacob Ames, as he becomes a mentor to a young fighter.

The film, written by Danny Pakulski, promises stories to come from the young creators of Oddity, but what sets this film apart is its cinematic and production value, credited to Simon Yahn and Liam O’Brien. The dynamic fight scenes not only add on-screen action, but include a never-before-seen introspective aspect through the script. Quick cuts, powerful sound effects and striking visuals reinforce the storyline which, at times, stretches out with monologues.

It’s worth noting that for being a short, it doesn’t feel rushed, as lines like “tell me about your dad” evoke emotion and background that act as catalysts for the rest of the film.

The tension comes to a head as Alexander meets Mr. Barley, an established war friend of Alexander’s father who is less than fondly remembered, who gives him an ultimatum.

Alexander remains unfazed, exemplified by witty comebacks against Mr. Barley, who seems to represent the disparities of the class system to a greater extent.

The film explores themes of patriotism, violence, masculinity, and sanity, as Alexander’s greatest adversary seems to be himself. Audiences are just as close to seeking clarity in the final blow of the fight, only to find the moment clouded by dust clearing in the ring, hungry for more.

This Peaky Blinders-a historic piece that speaks of the great creative freedom that can be expected in the future from Oddity Productions.

Written and directed by: Danny Pakulski // Starring: Jacob Ames, Connor McNelis, David Durst // Oddity Productions

Chloe Forbes can be reached at cforbes@eriereader.com

Gladys T. Hensley