'Backyard Bowler' by Amanda Tan - (FLARE 2009)

Tim Ang is a man who is jogging though memories of his youth as he sits in bed, waiting for death to claim him. He's smoked too much of his good health baway and is probably trying to find some sense of rationalisation or even closure to the follies of his youth.
His youth is portrayed as a lackadaisical youth. Sporting curly hair, he spends all day bowling in his home garden till the pins have cracked. The close up on the 'Fortune Cat' that waves rhythmically seems to suggest a squandering away of time. Like a day-dream, you ae not sure where this leads the plot to. Also, the context of the bowling scene is not well-established. It made me unaware of where I was and how I wass to feel about Tim's dallying in the garden. Perhaps, it is a just a reflection, a contemplation of an aimless past by a regretful older Tim.
Peculiar to me is also the look of the 3 stages of his life. Somehow, the sense of the 2 earlier times, as a kid and as a curly haird youth did not come across as a recalled episode. They looked more like scenes from the present. Think the recurring image of a recent 'gadget' like the Fortune Cat' tends to work against Amanda's aim to recreate the past. Ironically, his ailing state in the present looks more like a distant or even imagined future.

Finally, an interesting point to note - this film has been penned by a female.


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