User Reviews (3)

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  • bnew2 January 2004
    I saw this on HBO Family a few years ago, and this is the first time I have ever written a review on this site. This film makes me cry every time I see it. If you hear only the music, it is touching. If you see only the images, it is touching. When the music and clay-mation images are combined, it is tragic and beautiful. The viewer is taken on a journey through a dog's memories as he wanders around an empty house. He remembers, through flashback images, the little boy who was his owner. He misses him, and he can't find him. What makes this film so poignant for me is the open ended aspect of it. We, as the viewer, never find out why the boy is no longer there. That outcome is left to our imagination. I was also moved by how well the lonely and empty aspects of the home were conveyed in a miniature set, which seemed to be a doll house. This short film can speak to everyone in some way. I believe we all carry with us pain and regret about the people, pets, or anyone in our lives that we wish we could see...just one more time. The story can touch me in its own right. The feelings it stirs in me then become overwhelming, and the tears flow. If you need a good cry, then watch this film.
  • I believe the other comment about this movie is a little off. The Without You directed by Ryan Mcculloch that I saw was a little different. In this short film a dog is wandering an empty house remember the young master he once had with some rather cute flashbacks. All the while a rather sad song is playing with the same title. What is so impressive about this film is that it is clay animation and was made by a fourteen year old from California. The animation is quite impressive and Mcculloch's storytelling is very good as well. When you watch this film you would not believe that its was made by a teenager with only the help of his father. Mcculloch is a fantastic storyteller and I can't wait to see what is in store for the future.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    After murdering his wife, James puts her body in the boot of his car and sets out to find a place to dump her body. He has to make a stop at a petrol station in order to load up with a fiver worth of petrol but leaves his keys in the car when he goes to pay and his car is stolen before he can get back to it. He gets a bus in the vague direction of the stolen car and manages to find it in the possession of Billy. James goes to Billy's downtrodden girlfriend Jess for help but finds himself with more than he bargained for.

    I wasn't sure what to expect from this film – the plot summary on the title page (and even my summary above) make it sound like some sort of dark caper comedy and indeed I wasn't totally sure what it was until the end of the film. Up until this point the film had been interesting but had been a little unsatisfying as I wasn't totally convinced by the side issue of Jess' story – however this is sidelined by a final two minutes that twist everything you have seen before. It isn't a massive twist that will shock you but it is a gentle one of perception that worked pretty well, certainly well enough for me to end the short feeling satisfied with the story.

    The short is delivered with a good dark sense of style. The direction is very good and uses simple shots pretty well – special mention should also go to whoever scouted out the locations and they use the city of Leeds very well and also have found some good flats and restaurants to set scenes in. The soundtrack has it's obvious moments but generally it is a good selection that is well used throughout – some of it was very good and it put me in the mood to hunt some of it down. The cast also do well, although Lennie James is easily the best role in it – he is required to murder someone within the first few seconds of the short but do it without losing the audience's support or interest – he does it very well and he makes the short work. Stephenson's character wasn't that good and her performance couldn't do anything to change that despite being pretty good. Graham is a basic lad – no, this is James' short and he commands it very well.

    Overall this film isn't what I expected but it was better than I expected. It has weaknesses that were bothering me throughout but I felt that the bleak twist towards the end was a satisfying end and changed my perspective on the film and the characters. I doubt that this would work as well if I sat to watch it a second time but as a punchy, memorable short I thought this delivered the goods – and even made me see the goods in a different light thanks to a nice touch at the end.