The 16-year-old Daniel is a huge long jumping talent who constantly breaks his own records. For Daniel, breaking records is a way for him to keep his dying mother alive. She is in a coma, ...
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The short KATUSHA tells the story of the young violinist Katusha. When her alcoholic father once again lets her down and does not attend her leaving concert, she finds him intoxicated in ... See full summary »
A young boy Alfred is dying, but through the stories about HELIUM - a magical fantasy world, told by the hospital's eccentric janitor Enzo, Alfred regain the joy and happiness of his life, and finds a safe haven away from daily life.
The 16-year-old Daniel is a huge long jumping talent who constantly breaks his own records. For Daniel, breaking records is a way for him to keep his dying mother alive. She is in a coma, but Daniel discovers that every time he tells the mother about a new record, she reacts by moving a finger. Unfortunately, Daniel stops being able to beat his own record and at the same time his mother's condition gets worse. Daniel feels that he has part of the blame because he is convinced that the records helps the mother to stay alive. In a desperate attempt to avoid the doctors shutting off his mother's life support, Daniel starts to jump between rooftops. He is convinced that the adrenaline he will get by jumping at great altitude is the extra kick he needs to push his body to new records and hopefully keep his mother alive.Written by
Responsibly real portrayal of the pain of hope and of loss
One of the things I really enjoy about watching short films is that it is very easy to come to them with a completely clean slate and open mind, probably because you've never heard of them but also because it doesn't feel like a risk if they are no good, because they are generally less than 20 minutes. I came to 9 meter with no knowledge of the subject matter beyond it being a drama of some sort. The plot sees Daniel as a teenage athlete whose specific passion is the long-jump. His mother lies immobile in a hospital bed with a brain hemorrhage and his father is slowly trying to come to terms with having to go with the doctors' advice and turn off the life support. Whether it is real or not, Daniel believes that his mother has moved her finger the last few times he has told her of him breaking a personal record, pushing him to do more in an attempt to wake her up.
This short is very deliberate and slight and it will not satisfy those looking for big moments of emotion to get weepy over, or to show off just how "big" the performances can be or how loud the composer can take his music. Instead it is a film that takes a more realistic approach while also delivering the device of Daniel's efforts having perhaps some influence at all. Through this device we see the hope but we also see it become something pointless as it is increasingly clear that we are not in some magic land where such things will happen and, while we want Daniel to succeed, we also want him to be able to come to terms with his inevitable loss and the sense of powerlessness that he feels.
This aspect of the film is well done for the most part, with Daniel being well drawn as a character. His father is not so well done, which is a limiting factor when viewing, but he is fine as a device. The direction gives the whole film a somber air and the use of music to complement is unobtrusive and well laid. Ultimately the tone of the piece means it is downbeat and doesn't provide a big payoff one way or the other, leaving the viewer to feel however they wish about Daniel and his situation, however it is still effective in its slightness and realism.
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