Feb 27

“Our Time Is Up”: The Long and Short Of It in Live Short Action Film

Speaking of the Academy Awards (and I’m guessing many of you were at some point recently?), a nominee for Live Short Action Film in 2006 was called Our Time Is Up, which I would sum up as being about—you guessed it—minding therapy.

Writer-director Rob Pearlstein depicts psychologist Dr. Stern (Kevin Pollak) as an ineffectual shrink who lacks, for whatever reasons, an essential oomph behind his work—is it boredom? depression?

At any rate, he basically just goes through the motions; despite this, at least some of his clients seem to continue seeing him despite their lack of progress and his unhelpful stock responses to their problems. Let’s just say that something then happens that leads to a drastic change in his therapeutic approach. If you want to know more (as in spoilers), keep reading after the video.

Although the video below indicates a length of almost 15 minutes, the movie itself sans credits actually runs less than 12.

An argument for using a therapeutic style somewhere between these two approaches right from the get-go?  In other words, instead of non-helpful longer-term therapy on one extreme or Dr. Phil-like instant therapy on the other, how about solution-focused process-oriented therapy?

The Spoiler Intro to Our Time Is Up per The Short Films Blog:

“Dr. Stern is an extremely organized and uptight psychiatrist who does his job every day with less than a smile on his face. His patients include a womanizer who can’t form a connection with women, an anorexic,  a man who is in denial about his attraction towards men, a woman who is obsessed with cleanliness, a man who can’t help but touch a woman’s ass, a man who is deathly afraid of turtles, a man who is abused by his girlfriend and a man who is afraid of the dark. Dr. Stern doesn’t do much of anything for these patients, that is, until he gets a call from his own doctor with pretty horrible news… he has only six weeks to live. Upon retrieving this information, Dr. Stern begins to care less about being professional and more about living his life. Along with this new appreciation for life, Dr. Stern also starts to actually give his patients advice. As brutally honest as he is in his delivery, Dr. Stern truly makes a remarkable difference in each of his patients’ lives.”