This comedy short delivers in one big way. It’s actually funny. From director Dillon Oleata, “Jackpot: The Price of Wealth” never takes itself too seriously. These low-budget filmmakers work within their limitations and as a result the film does too. The actors were fresh. The boys’ naiveté in the face their friend’s increasingly sadistic demands is reminiscent at times of “Jackass,” making one wonder if the film’s title might not be an allusion.
Over all this short was cute and well done. There was one scene, however, that did more harm to the film than good, the computer-breaking scene. Here’s why: Since this scene supposedly took place after Jeff won the lottery, seeing him walk into an common, everyday house broke the illusion, an illusion that took several minutes of screen time to recover. In an eleven-minute film, and so close to the beginning, this was one stumble the film can’t afford to make.
Instead perhaps prepare the audience. Since the presence of the camera crew is acknowledged in the film, Jeff could preface the scene for the audience. As he’s walking up his friend’s lawn, he could say something like, “This is my friend __’s house. He’s not rich, so it’s kind of shitty, but we’re meeting the guys here.” He could then pause at the door to put on his stupid had, really draw attention to his 80’s chic ensemble. The bottom line is that this film is much better done, over all, than the start of the computer-breaking scene lets on. Having a second for Jeff to set audience expectations about the setting and work his charm on the audience could fix all that, raising the overall film quality by a solid half star.