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average rating is 4 out of 5


Swati Verma


Posted on:

Jun 19, 2024

Film Reviews
Directed by:
Fabien Oman
Written by:
Fabien Oman
Dan Rowe, Louise Bourke, Sebastian Stepheson

The writer-director Fabien Oman with Staggered wants to explore the range of emotions and changes people go through when they are transitioning into various stages of their lives and how everything seems unsteady during this period. Dave Rowe and Louise Bourke help the makers bring out the complexities of the situation the protagonists are in and quickly increase the degree of audience engagement with the content of the film.


The plot of the short film Staggered revolves around Dan who bumps into his ex-girlfriend Eabha, she has a long agonised over question that has major implications for both of them.


Staggered begins with a black screen along with the dramatic sounds of Dave practicing for his audition followed by the mid shot of him trying to manage everything at once showcasing both the mental and physical ruckus Dave is experiencing until he bumps into Eabha transforming all the noise as well as disturbance into calmness providing the much-required depth and realism to the narrative. The set design, colour pallet, lighting, camera angles, dialogues, costume, hair, makeup, and props are kept natural so that the viewers can concentrate on the key messages the storyline wants to deliver and allow them to learn and incorporate the same into their lives.


In terms of performance, Dave Rowe plays Dan who is a struggling actor in search of opportunities to shine in his career while he stumbles upon someone special from the past and how the buried emotions as well the memories come rushing in. He gets busy with his day but mentally stays in the period when Dan met her. Rowe with his body language, voice modulation, dialogue delivery skills, facial expressions, and eyes beautifully portrays the struggle of not being able to strike a balance between his professional and personal life. The range of mixed emotions right from the joy of meeting her to the helplessness of losing her is very well depicted therefore making it relatable for the audience with every twist and turn in the narrative.

Louise Bourke plays the role of Eabha who is Dan’s ex-girlfriend and has moved on with her fiancé but has many unanswered questions in her mind that she needs answers to from Dan. Bourke brilliantly illustrates how Eabha appears to be logical and practical initially but later on the audience discovers the unsaid details keeping them interested in the character and so Eabha tends to stay with them even after they have finished watching the film.


Staggered talks about the sensitive nature of any relationship, and the importance of communication to maintain a healthy one all through. The short film also reiterates how a proper closure is crucial because living with any misunderstanding can ruin the peace of the couple involved in the relationship. The cinematic piece spreads awareness about what challenges life throws at someone while one is dealing with the phase of adulting. The creative piece highlights that sometimes one has to make sensible decisions in the present time instead of repenting about the past moving on is the best option for the well being of the duo and remember it as a beautiful chapter in their lives as moving away from love is difficult.

About the Film Critic
Swati Verma
Swati Verma
Short Film
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