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My Obsession with Death

average rating is 5 out of 5


Chris Buick


Posted on:

Apr 14, 2024

Film Reviews
My Obsession with Death
Directed by:
Alexis Evelyn
Written by:
Alexis Evelyn
Alison Thornton, Brooklyn Summer, Malachi Kobayash, Jance Enslini

In Alexis Evelyn’s deliciously morbid short My Obsession with Death we meet Ruby (Thornton), a lucky survivor of a horrible car accident in her younger years but now as a young woman who should be relishing adolescence, Ruby instead simply can’t help herself from constantly contemplating her own mortality.


My Obsession with Death allows us to laugh in the face of our own absurd thoughts when it comes to kicking the bucket without ever totally dismissing or shaming us for them, which as someone who also always worries about sharks in the swimming pool can greatly appreciate. As silly as it may seem to worry about it endlessly, things can and do happen and it’s that uncomfortable balance that Evelyn realises and masterclasses here.


The dark and the macabre has of course always been fertile ground for comedy and Evelyn does a fantastic job to make sure the film always maintains the correct amount of levity perfectly weighted against the seriousness of its subject, utilizing everything from razor-sharp writing inside a constantly punchy script, editing that fully encapsulates the franticness of Ruby’s obsessive mind, fabulous framing and a fantastic cast to allow us to laugh along.


But as mentioned the film also manages to tap into our irrationalities and our inherent preoccupations with death, whether consciously or subconsciously, and bring them front and centre. As ridiculous as some of her apprehensions might seem, Ruby isn't exactly wrong in her evidence as to why she should be worried so about biting the dust, some of the eye-opening stats the film casually drops in will suddenly cut into your laughter and derision to instead make you think “ that true?”. Again, it’s all so deftly executed and a real testament to Evelyn’s undeniable filmmaking and storytelling abilities.


And after Evelyn’s exceptional film craft has teed everything up perfectly, it’s Thornton’s Ruby who comes and knocks it straight out of the park, their deadpan and fully serious, spot-on delivery channelling that sense of darkness and injecting it with a black humour that will resonate so much with so many and is just the cherry on top of a film that’s to die for.


My Obsession with Death has got such a winning formula that Ruby’s musings on her own demise deserve to be and could likely do pretty well as part of a longer series, but alas this brilliant ten minutes will have to do for now.

About the Film Critic
Chris Buick
Chris Buick
Short Film
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