Beard Envy short film review

Updated: Jan 1, 2019

★★★

Directed by: #JohnTomkins

Written by: #JohnTomkins based on the poem by #RobertGarnham

Starring: #RobertGarnham as narrator and #JackAllum

Film Review by: #AnnieVincent





Utilising the spoken word poem by Robert Garnham, who is also the narrator, #BeardEnvy is a whimsical short exploring the covetousness and yearning of the baby-faced for the increasingly fashionable beards of today.


The mixing of the narrated spoken word poem and the retro mimed performance it accompanies, enhances the humour of Garnham’s original poem with the casting of the smooth and supple-skinned Allum on point. Allum also has a slightly oblivious look about him too which only reinforces his alienation from the hip and masculine (though sometimes slightly unhinged) men he seeks to befriend. So desperate is Dan A Beard to join this elite group of woolly-mushes, he makes a few feeble and desperate attempts to achieve one, dreaming of the day scientists will be able to enhance his bum-fluff and other beardies will flock to him for a stroke.


This film has been produced thoughtfully and professionally, with the editing of the visual sequence clever and well-matched to Garnham’s narrated poem. The entire production, from the editing to the acting to the sound, is in keeping with the light humour of the original poem and never takes itself too seriously. It is a clever idea, to bring visuals to a spoken word poem and in an age where visuals reign supreme, an excellent vehicle for extending the reach of the poem.


This film slots nicely into that small niche of film for pleasure’s sake. There are no hard-hitting ideas, no Oscar-worthy performances, but there are some smiles for a topical and fashionable phenomenon that some of us are sadly (or perhaps gladly) excluded from.