Swim Zack Swim (2002)

Swim Zack Swim(2002)A few weeks ago, I reviewed a film by Sterling Productions called Emmett. My impressions of it were not too positive due to some failures in editing and shortcomings of directing. Still, the young cast was enthusiastic enough (and Matthew Rappolt gave the impression of a boy with colossal acting potential), all of which convinced me to watch and review another of that studio’s productions. In the meantime, the website of Sterling Productions was renewed – which gave me hope that the studio will keep producing films. As the saying goes, “Practice makes perfect” which has given me high expectations for future productions from the studio.

Swim Zack Swim is a 26-minute short film written, produced, and directed by Sterling Johnston. In the movie, the viewer is introduced to the young Zackary Thompson (Evan Phillips), who becomes interested in swimming after talking with his best friend, Christopher (Robert Mc, who used to be on the local swim team of Toronto. The nearest pool is 15 kilometers (a little more than 9 miles) away. But that doesn’t stop the two friends’ determination to break their daily routine and spend the day hanging out by the pool.

Once there, Zack observes his friend’s excellent technique and decides that he wants to learn how to swim that well too. He has to overcome several obstacles and the distance to the pool is only one of them. His father insists that they can not afford the swimming lessons Zack needs because every cent is to be saved for his further education. Yet, Zack doesn’t give up and secretly finds a job as a helper in a local store, which allows him to pay for swimming lessons.

One of the funniest scenes in the film results when Zack decides to use some of the earnings from his job to get himself a real swimming suit. I was on my town’s swim team for several years and still find it ridiculous to see people swimming in shorts. One could hardly walk in them, let alone be on a swim team or even just have fun at the beach  (but the fashion now dictates that shorts are cooler – for whatever reason).

The story of the film is simple yet fun to watch. The camera work is better than that in Emmet, especially in the underwater scenes (especially the excellent opening scene). The musical score, by KYN, also enhanced the film’s overall mood and makes it more enjoyable to watch. Don’t raise your expectations too high, yet if you are up for a refreshing short story, Swim Zack Swim is your film.

Film’s official web page

PS. Although theskykid.com does not have any affiliation with the production company, I would like to finish this review with a quote of their mission as published on their website:

Sterling Productions is a not-for-profit production house dedicated to helping local youth fulfill their dreams and goals of starting a professional acting career.

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