The New Tenants

A Vixen Review of The New Tenants Synopsis: The film opens to find a couple, newly moved into an apartment, sitting at their dining table having a friendly argument over the dangers of smoking cigarettes and other random issues facing the world. As Frank rants, and Peter listens, several apartment neighbors knock on their door, asking for various things. An elderly woman asking to borrow a baking ingredient to make cinnamon buns for her granddaughter; a husband looking for his unfaithful wife; a man looking for his possessions left at the apartment by the previous tenant. Things take a very wrong turn about 10 minutes into this black comedy.

Other films nominated

By far, The New Tenants was the best of the bunch. I don't say this as a fan of VDO, but as a fan of film. From what I could gauge from my fellow theatre-goers, most seemed to like The New Tenants best. My husband thought this was true, also. Briefly, the other films, while certainly all quite good, didn't compare to TNT. Kavi, a film about slaves in India, was very good, suspenseful to a point, but ultimately didn't feel like an Oscar-worthy flick. Miracle Fish, while a somewhat interesting story, with a suspenseful couple of minutes, eventually feels like a student film. The Door is a very emotionally intense story that was very depressing. The filmmakers did a great job in the 17 minutes or so that they had to present their story, but I couldn't wait for it to be over. Sometimes that's a sign of a good film, and I'd have to say The Door was the second best film, but not a favorite. Instead Of Abracadabra, now this is the film that seems to be the front-runner for the Oscar. It was a very cute story, very happy ending, and I'll tell you, after seeing the first 4 films, with all the violence, death, suffering and emotional angst, Abracadabra was a welcome respite. I wouldn't be surprised if it wins the award, but truly, the best story and the way it was presented (filmed/acted/edited) in my humble opinion, is The New Tenants. However, I would be surprised if it wins the damn award.

Mauigirl's Oscar Shorts Theatre Adventure

About an hour before my husband and I left our house to see the Shorts, I showered and dressed. I curled my hair and finished off my make-up by actually putting on mascara (which I usually save for big occasions). I spritzed the teeny-tiniest bit of Hypnotic Poison into the air and walked through it. I wore my tight Guess jeans, black suede boots, a pretty black lacy cami with a red cardigan on top. I wore my favorite gold bracelet, and slipped off my plain gold wedding band in favor of my diamond band. I felt great and was ready to go!

As we drove to the theatre, I could barely breathe. I had to calm myself down before I started hyperventilating. My husband turned to look at me, then back to the road and chuckled. When I asked him what was so funny, he said that I had the biggest smile on my face. And he knew why. I was smiling? Really?

Once in the theatre, I was like a kid on Christmas Eve. We purchased our tickets and went to find seats, and I was surprised to see the theatre quite filled. Good sign.

I could barely keep still in my seat, but before I knew it, the lights went down and the show started. The New Tenants was shown second, and it was funny and bad/sad the way any good black comedy should be. But I gotta tell you, Vincent's very short time on screen was the best acting of all the actors in all the Oscar shorts. You could hear the response from the audience at V's character's dilemma. V is so good at facial expressions, not needing to say a word, just the look in his eyes, the way he tilts his head and squiggles his mouth. At one point, I heard several "Awwww"s, one coming from my husband. Vincent amazes me, in that short amount of time, the entire theatre felt his pain. But, that's our man! Vincent portrays an understandably upset husband, and his anguish and anger was felt by every audience member. There's one scene, an extreme close-up, where he stops talking, and you know he's thinking things through in his mind, and it was just heart-breaking.

It was also very fun to see the two actors who portray the new tenants (Jamie Harrold, Dorian from Collective; and David Rakoff, who did the screenplay adaptation). They reacted off VDO's character beautifully. Jamie Harrold had me laughing, the look on his face was absolutely priceless! So, VDO's character, Jan, spills his guts to these two strangers, the next thing you know, their doorbell rings. Jan asks if they're expecting someone and goes to see who it is. Kevin Corrigan is at the door.

And I'll stop here, as the next bit has Jan going from, hmmmmm, how shall I put this. From standing up and full of life, angst-ridden though it may be, to no longer standing.

Interestingly, and I was clueless to this, Sam Bisbee (collaborator of V's friend ;) George Gerkie, is one of the producers of this little flick. So....if TNT wins the Oscar, Sammy will be on stage accepting the award. I'm sure he'll thank V in some capacity.
It was a very fun evening and I urge you to see this in the theatre if you can.


  1. Thanks a lot for the summary!
    I'd love to watch this and it sounds pretty awesome, but it's not shown anywhere around here apparently and I haven't even found it online to watch. :(

    I wasn't even aware that this one got an Oscar nomination until I read it in the VDO-verse, but I'll keep my fingers crossed for it. Would be sweet if a project with Vincent in it got some well-deserved recognition. :)


  2. Anonymous2:04 PM

    A 20 minute short film is highly unlikely to make it into UK theatres - hell, we didn't even get 'The Narrows' OR 'Staten Island'! - but I'll go see it if I can...or wait for the DVD; assuming I manage to live that long of course ;0)

    Thanks for the review hon!

  3. You can see this on OnDemand offered by cable companies such as Time Warner or Comcast. Also, iTunes is offering it, so that might be your best bet for now.

  4. Loved your review.

    I managed to download it from iTunes after seeing Eliza's post on fb. it cost £1.49, worth it just to see Vincent for a few minutes!

  5. Thanks for the review! Sounds like a Fabulous evening...

  6. I was going to go and see the shorts tomorrow, but with a cough like I have, it might not happen.

  7. Really hope TNT gets an Oscar. Well, tomorrow we'll know. By the way, I think the acronym TNT is is highly appropriate because Vince is like dynamite. LOL!
    I'm a fan of this sort of films. At least the director is Danish, which gives me reason to hope German cinemas will show TNT. PLEASE!!!

    Thanks for sharing your 'adventure', maui.
    Get well soon, Val!

  8. Wow, Mauigirl, thanks for the indepth commentary. It was very insightful. Glad you had a good time.

  9. Excellent summary, Mauigirl! I did not get to attend the screening here in Chicago, as I had to work! So thanks for allowing me to live vicariously through your reviews! Hopefully, I will be able to order these through On Demand. You've made me want to see TNT more than ever. Thanks!

  10. As the only chance I was going to get to see it was by downloading it, I really had no choice. It probably took me longer to set up i-tunes than Vincent had on screen, but I don't care, it was worth it!

  11. Great job on the review! I got to see it and really enjoyed it. AND it just WON the Oscar!!!!