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Short Film Sunday: Late Afternoon

Malu Rocha reviews Louise Bagnall’s short film, a well-crafted story that deals with emotions at its rawest state

Photo Credit: Cartoon Saloon


Following on the same line as the cinematography, the sound design by composer and musician Calm Mac Con Iomaire also reflects the film’s incredibly gentle characters and their story. Although the little dialogue there is seems a bit unrealistic, the sound score is astonishingly delicate and elegant, immersing the audience into the charming world of the Emily’s bittersweet memories.

 

Special attention should be brought to little details placed in very particular moments in the film. The scene where Emily writes her name playfully on the sand and the waves of the ocean carelessly wash them away is utterly beautiful and carries a much deeper metaphorical connotation than a quick first glance would suggest.

 

All these elements help shape and convey the overarching universal theme of the story; the strong familial bond that withstands the test of time. Even though the treatment of a person with dementia is a heavy and often dark subject to deal with, the film portrays it in a bright light, giving it its due attention and never undermining its seriousness. The film’s sensible treatment of this disease has allowed for more viewers to open up about their own experiences and even thank the director for such a truthful portrayal.  Louise has stated that having people open up to her has felt like winning a prize in and of itself.


Late Afternoon has been screened in over 80 festivals around the world and has won the prize for Best Animated Short at the Tribeca Film Festival. This recognition, apart from serving as an indicator for the success of the film, also serves to show how much Cartoon Saloon studios and other Irish animation studios, such as Brown Bag, have accomplished in the last few years. Louise has stated that “the Irish animation boom has been amazing”, and although the country is relatively small in terms of its size and population, its government has been incredibly supportive in helping the industry grow.

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