977. Over Dinner – Marcus Armitage

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SUMMARY: A family have their last meal together before the son joins the army.

WHY IT’S HERE: Marcus Armitage’s 3 minute oil-on-glass animation ‘Over Dinner’ captures a moment in time with gut-wrenching accuracy as a family dine together on the night before the son leaves for the army. Armitage invests the parents with touchingly recognisable emotions, combining pride and sadness, but it is the son’s mental state that the short focuses on, as the reality of his decision begins to hit home. As the cosy suburban walls are ripped down by military vehicles, the son is consumed with anxiety but unable to share it completely with his loving mother and father. As someone who has struggled with anxiety at the mere thought of a new job, ‘Over Dinner’ taps into a recognisably overwhelming feeling but at an extreme that I can barely stand to imagine. I loved the film but I was glad it was only three minutes as the viewer is drawn into the panic and regret of the son so thoroughly that any more could have brought on breathing problems of my own!

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