15 Minutes At 400 Degrees

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11th November 2019

A Comedy Of Errors

When Buddy Owens, John Gemberling (“DuckTales (TV)”, “Broad City (TV)”), loses his job, he decides to enact revenge on the company owner.

However, he decides to wait 12 months before actually doing it. He tracks down John, Richard Riehle (“Casino”, “Office Space”), in his home and, leaving his daughter to sleep in the van outside, enters through the front door, punching John in the face for good measure.

What he encounters isn’t quite what he expected to see, nor what we’d expect to see either. For this company owner may live in a large, expensive looking house, but it’s empty.

John now spends his time cooking his dead wife’s recipes whilst talking online to a cam-girl Crystal, Elizabeth Gillies (“Dynasty (TV)”, “Animal”), whom he’s chatting to as Buddy enters his home.

What follows is a comedic catastrophe as Buddy lurches from one bad idea to the next whilst Crystal manages to find everything out about him from the internet and John’s whole life is laid bare.

15 Minutes At 400 Degrees is a funny, breathless short. Gemberling is frenetic in his pace which director Chris McCaleb (“Prom Queen (TV)”, “Sorority Forever (TV)”) matches without leading to any form of sickness.

There is an obvious question as to why Buddy doesn’t just switch Crystal off, but we’ll let that slide as it’s a short and as it works for the general concept.

15 Minutes At 400 Degrees is a lovely short that is well acted, well written and well directed, and you can’t ask for much more than that.

Two years after losing his wife, John finds solace in an unusual connection.

Chris McCaleb

Carmella Casinelli, Douglas Cheney

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