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Doodlebug (1997)

 |  Short, Fantasy, Mystery  |  1997 (UK)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 9,791 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 8 critic

In a ratty flat, a man is on his hands and knees, holding a shoe by its toe, trying to kill a bug of some sort that so far has managed to evade him. He keeps up the chase and whacks at it a... See full summary »


(as Chris Nolan)


(as Chris Nolan)
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Cast overview:
Jeremy Theobald ...
The Man


In a ratty flat, a man is on his hands and knees, holding a shoe by its toe, trying to kill a bug of some sort that so far has managed to evade him. He keeps up the chase and whacks at it a few times. Then, we get a look at what he's been trying to flatten. In what sort of universe have we found ourselves? Who's in danger? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Fantasy | Mystery

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

1997 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Buba  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Chisropher Nolan shot this film when he was studying English literature in London. See more »


Edited into Cinema16: British Short Films (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Rather obvious but effective enough for the short running time
10 July 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

A man is trying to catch some sort of bug running around his room. He takes his shoes off and intends to crush it under the heel of his loafer. However as he slowly begins to track the bug down and trap it, things chance dramatically but the man continues his course of action. Before Nolan hit the big time with several successful motion pictures, he made this short while studying English at University in London. It is rather atmospheric and is enjoyable for that reason.

The plot is interesting at the start and has a nice twist at the end which is pretty obvious once you see it being set up, but this isn't too much of a problem because there are only a few seconds between set up and delivery, so you're not wasting time being led somewhere you have already arrived. It is very much a student film as it thinks it is cleverer than it is and it seems like the sort of idea you have when you think that nobody else would ever think the same way – but this is just an observation, not so much an attack.

In terms of atmosphere the majority of the film really works; grainy black and white, dark rooms with bright intrusive light spread sparingly across the room and 'things' moving rapidly around our main man. It does just enough to feel like it is building to something but not so much that the ending will be a disappointment.

Overall it is worth seeing mainly because of what its director has gone on to do since this. As a short film in its own right it is atmospheric enough and with an interesting premise to the point that it is worth a few minutes of your time; but the ending is not as 'out of the blue' or as clever as Nolan must have thought it was at the time – happily he has gone on to much bigger and better things since!

75 of 86 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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