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Everyone Forgot

average rating is 5 out of 5


Joe Beck


Posted on:

Mar 22, 2023

Film Reviews
Everyone Forgot
Directed by:
Theo Kai Marlow
Written by:
Theo Kai Marlow, Jack Lawrence
Anwen Bull, James Knapp

Athazagoraphobia is the fear of being forgotten. It’s strange how few people know the name given that more than most people experience it at some stage during their lives. That’s the subject you think you’ll get from ‘Everyone Forgot’, a film which looks like a light dramedy, but ends up being far more engaging and compelling than it first appears.


See, it’s Lily Painter’s (Anwen Bull) 40th birthday, a day for celebration with friends and family by all accounts. The issue is that nobody seems to have remembered, leaving Lily feeling rather jaded with her isolation, alone in a house only populated by unpacked boxes. She calls her mother, and though the two seem to be on at least amiable terms, there’s no mention of the big day, not even with Lily’s heavy handed prompts. She calls her friend, or perhaps more of a colleague, Anna, yet she too neglects to remember that it’s her birthday. She calls over a handyman, he hasn’t even clocked that it’s her birthday - but that’s not his fault, and he’s invited in to ‘hang out’.


From here you expect a cute little romcom, with a touch of drama, and for sparks to fly between the handyman, Ben (James Knapp) and Lily, and for a while things appear to be headed that way. They get along nicely and Ben, despite his initial misgivings and understandable awkwardness seems to be enjoying himself. However, the beauty of ‘Everyone Forgot’ is in its expertly crafted shift, as writer-director Theo Kai Marlow changes the pace and tone of the film so skilfully that the twist seems obvious and this critic felt like a fool (a very impressed one) for not noticing the carefully placed foreshadowing just minutes earlier.


Theo Kai Marlow’s directing is excellent throughout, from the evocative opening shot, zooming out from a close up of Lily, dressed in her dressing gown, lighting a cigarette in her back garden. Certain shots throughout are artful, certainly exceeding expectations given the film’s low budget, and proving that a talented director can work well no matter the constraints put upon them. Marlow’s writing is perhaps even more impressive, successfully blending comedy and drama, and ultimately leading onto horror, as he depicts more than one nightmare.


Marlow’s writing also lends itself to his actors, who both give delightful performances. Anwen Bull is mesmerising as Lily, going from 0-60 in the speed of light, as she flips from despondent to buoyant to manic. She delivers lines, both comedic and dramatic, with precision and poise, in such a manner that she grips you, forcing you to keep your eyes on her every facial movement. James Knapp is the perfect foil to Bull’s purposefully over-the-top performance, toning down his character to match Ben’s everyman demeanour. The two riff off one another with a natural chemistry, complimenting each other’s styles in an endlessly endearing way.


‘Everyone Forgot’ is, in a strange way, an endearing film. Not because it is heartwarming, or because its characters are full of joy, but rather because of the bravura with which Theo Kai Marlow and his able duo of Anwen Bull and James Knapp do their jobs. They perfectly complement each other, just as Marlow’s crafty script complements his tight direction. ‘Everyone Forgot’ is a joy to watch, nobody involved should need fear being forgotten about.

About the Film Critic
Joe Beck
Joe Beck
Short Film
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