Apr 11, 2023
Rishan Dhamija, Crystal Kim, Meg Evans
An Indian theatre worker living in the United States reluctantly agrees to audition for a lead role in a play after the designated actor quits.
Anirudh (Dhamija) is a former actor who now works in plays in a variety of other roles, yet he dreams of becoming a great actor. Complications arise regarding the play he is currently working, as lead actor Timothee (Kieran Barry) has left the play in order to pursue other ventures and director Anastasia (Evans) has a very limited amount of time to find a replacement. Will this be Anirudh's chance to show his acting talents to the world?
This entertaining short comedy tells a story by utilising an issue that foreigners sometimes have to face, which is a foreign accent. Anirudh loves acting, however he abandoned it as he lost his confidence due to past failed performances related to his accent. Even now, his accent still gets in the way when he interacts with people, be it colleagues or stangers and it is his friend and actress Zoey (Kim), who encourages him to try to get the part after Timothee quits, however Anirudh believes his accent will prevent him from getting it. The screenplay effectively explores Anirudh's character and his friendly relationship with Zoey and there are awkward and funny moments, with one that stands out being a montage of clumsy auditions
Dhamija's character is the protagonist and the story is told through his point of view. He is a person who has lost his inner strength because of his failed attempts to become an actor and has now become a sort of outsider, a guy who watches others succeed in something that he is very passionate about. Zoey is his shoulder to cry on, an optimistic young actress who believes in Anirudh. Other notable characters include Anastasia, the director of the play, who primarily thinks that Anirudh's biggest talent is to bring her coffee and Francis (William Lindner), an actor with a childish personality.
Puri does a great job with the directing and creates some wonderful extended tracking shots, special mention going to the one that opens the film. There are creative lighting effects, which look even better thanks to the cinematography by Zhibin Geng.
The majority of the narrative takes place in the theatre and regarding the mise-en-scene, significant praise goes to the costumes and stage props, which indicate that it is a medieval play.
Although this short is a light-hearted story, it is also a commentary about the challenges that foreigners have to deal with, paying particular emphasis on foreign accents, how that can harm their self-esteem. Despite addressing this serious problem, the film also states that if people believe in themselves, they can achieve their goals.