Underground Film Journal

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Animated Short Film: The Sandwich Movie

By Mike Everleth ⋅ January 4, 2011

Sibling rivalry is on display at it’s best in another family memory short film by Sean Christensen, The Sandwich Movie. Sean’s big sis takes out a passive-aggressive revenge on being ordered to do something nice for her little brother. It’s always the making of big deals out of simple tasks that will either a) tear a family apart; b) or bring them closer together by being able to laugh at the ridiculousness of it all. Luckily, we have the latter here…

This is the second short film I’ve embedded on the Underground Film Journal by Christensen. The previous one, Shave, was a more serious, but highly recommended, personal recollection of Sean’s about his father shaving off his mustache. Although both films have wildly different styles — beginning with one being animated and the other live action — Christensen is able to mine family stories that are both touching yet slightly troubling.

'70s magazine photo of hamburgers served on a tray

Sean and his sister Courtney seem to have a good time recalling the story that’s recounted in The Sandwich Movie. As I indicated, they are able to laugh at the whole thing, particularly Courtney realizing she did a jerky, mean thing to her completely innocent brother. But, who doesn’t commit indefensible, ludicrously rotten acts from time to time?

The film is very good-natured and funny with no ill will being expressed by either side. Really, this is all a really minor incident being recounted, but in being able to laugh along with the Christensens, the film makes us think about the silly things that have happened with our own families. And that’s Sean’s big strength in both these films: They’re highly personal, yet instantly relatable.

For more on Sean, you can watch more of his films on Vimeo and read about him on the site of his production company, Square One Cinema.

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