A short film about traveling and staying at home.
“But I think the walking has many different purposes. I’m thinking back to a short I made, Travel Plans , which had a couple shots of the characters walking down the streets in my hometown. I just liked the idea of showing these suburban American streets, in a way. You could of course show that without the person walking down the street, but obviously the landscape has a different quality when there’s a person there.”
“Broken Specs, Travel Plans, and Going Out form a kind of loose trilogy. Each provides a vivid regionalist portrait of Fendt’s hometown of Haddonfield, New Jersey, a suburb outside Philadelphia perhaps best known cinematically (if at all) as the inspiration for the fictional Haddonfield, Illinois in John Carpenter’s Halloween. In all three shorts, the narrative framework is fundamentally the same: the protagonists have chance run-ins with friends on the street (Fendt’s Haddonfield is a wintry, drab cousin to Rohmer’s Paris, with acquaintances constantly bumping into each other) and get casually whisked off to some kind of social gathering: a party or an apartment get-together or a meal or a bar. People hang out – they watch hockey, drink in kitchens, play with model train sets, see the Robocop remake at the multiplex – but mainly talk past each other. Every time, a character blacks out somewhere he or she shouldn’t, waking up in an unfamiliar place and walking off alone.”
C. Mason Wells2
- 1Tedt Fendt in Joshua Bogatin, “‘A Good, Direct Experience’: Ted Fendt talks about Outside Noise”, Screen Slate, 2022.
- 2C. Mason Wells, “Between Things: The Off-Kilter Comedies of Ted Fendt”, Notebook, 2015.