Let me get straight to the point, shall I? In a word, this short film "Julian" is completely ridiculous - and I genuinely mean that in the best way possible. The concepts at play here are as simple as they are complicated, but the entirety of this project is wrapped around a notion that is so absurd you really can't help but laugh. Or, at the very least, smile a little. Cory Stonebrook has penned a project that, under normal circumstances, could have been a complicated look at family - and then threw the monkey wrench named comedy. The result is a short film that seems to delight in its weirdness but never completely sheds its complex undertone.
The basics go a little like this - Brynn is expecting company, and it's not a secret that she's not looking forward to the coming scenario. We quickly learn that that "company" coming is none other than Brynn's sister Marlow. A sister whom she has never really gotten along with, and as a result, the two are pretty much estranged. When Marlow's time to enter the film arrives, it quickly becomes apparent that something is terribly off in the form of an unannounced guest. Her fiance. A movie that "should" have been about strained family dynamics and sibling rivalry quickly changes course, and although comedic in tone, there's still that more serious side I wrote about earlier. Bottom line? "Julian" is more than its seemingly simplistic concept, and yes, reader, it can be pretty amusing ... and perhaps even a little bit sad.
Vivian Kerr's direction of "Julian" is excellent. There's no other way to write it. There's something about the way everything is handled I can't quite put my finger on, and yet it works wonderfully well. The way jealousy is presented, especially when Brynn is watching the interactions between her husband Max and Marlow, is perfect. I also need to mention the balancing act the entire short film plays when dealing with the trio and the strange situation presented. I really don't want to spill the beans, but I can write that from a production point of view - I really have no complaints. My recommendation? If and when you can check out this short film. With a runtime of under ten minutes, there's no reason not to.
At the end of the day, "Julian" is a funny concept put together expertly by a small group that seemingly had a blast creating it. With some great performances and an unmistakable sparkle behind it, "Julian" is sure to turn many a frown upside down. For those looking for a little bit more depth than most silly comedies are capable of producing - there may be a little here for you as well—four out of five stars.
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