InReview often gets sent screeners for short films and our virtual mailbag has been backed up. “The Out” by Harry Brandrick is one such film we’ve been meaning to get to.
The film focuses on Liam (Allan Mustafa), a single dad and recovering heroin addict who must take care of his daughter, Sofia (Savannah Skinner-Henry), shortly after he has been released from prison. His friend, Marcus (Jamie Christofersen), who is also struggling with addiction, stops by to get help fueling his habit, which leads to a terse confrontation between him and Liam.
This is a very simple film, but it is shot and paced wonderfully. Brandrick does a great job making the ordinary seem interesting with his varied use of cinematography and his skill at zeroing in on the emotional conflict between Liam and Marcus. Liam is just a normal guy who is trying to get his life together, doing his best for his daughter and his friend, though he is careful not to get taken advantage by Marcus, who doesn’t respect his boundaries and is trying to feed his addiction at the cost of their friendship. Mustafa and Christofersen’s performances really make the film, as they execute the small tale Brandrick has planned for them with exceptional care.
This is also one of the few stories that I feel is perfectly suited for the short film format. At about 15 minutes long, “The Out” gives us a small but meaningful slice of life that is both profound and relatable. I would hesitate to call this one of the best short films I’ve seen from 2022, but all of its accolades are appropriately earned and I’d like to see more from Brandrick in the future.
“The Out” gets an 8.5/10
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