'THANKS FOR EVERYTHING'
- Directed by Frank Aron Gårdsø -
This short film is a tale about life decisions and human connections.
On the edge of a city bridge, a suicide attempter is surprised by the presence of another one. The older man, Tom, initiates a dialogues, gradually trying to convince the younger one, Marius, that he is not yet prepared to jump. Reluctant at first, Marius conforms. His loneliness is the cause of desperation and he finally gets to connect to another person who shows interest, asks questions and seems to unselfishly care.
The intimacy is ruined by a worried police officer and a drunk woman. The film ends like a sadistic joke: while the young men is distracted by the new events, Tom jumps and makes Marius loose his balance and fall.
With an atmosphere resembling the Scandinavian films of early expressionism and a plot similar to a Tolstovian novel, this character-driven short portrays two heroes searching the meaning of life and being ultimately defeated by the absurdity of it.
We appreciate the masterful low-key lighting of the characters and the picturesque visuals of this short, as well as the qualitative performance of the actors.
The beginning of the short drew our attention: very long shots of an empty and geometric city, where the only passer-by is Marius. This settings may suggest his feelings of loneliness and his incapacity to adapt to the conventions of society. Another observation regarding style is the insertion of sequences illustrating the dialogue; some of them show moments from the life of Marius and one in particular is a funny parable about hope told by Tom: a man that tests balloons gets trapped in the testing room and left without oxygen, he survives using the air from the balloons. “As long as there’s balloons, there’s hope”, says Tom, teaching the younger man that as long as there’s air to breathe, you can survive. These insertions look like pieces of a TV show, letting us see how thoughts unfold in the minds of the two while they’re on the bridge. On the one hand this breathes life in the long dialogue about the meaning of life, on the other hand, it distances the viewer from the two characters.
In conclusion, “Thanks for everything” is a gripping short film with an innovative narrative structure and a distinctive visual style.