Title: While You Were Away
Director: Ben Mallaby
Length: 6 minutes
Comedian Richard Herring may not be the first name you would think of when looking for the lead role in a dramatic short film. He is surprisingly good in While You Were Away however, a meditation on how arguments between couples tend to have the same beats, reprimands and reconciliation’s no matter what the actual source of the discord is in the first place.
Award winning director Ben Mallaby gets up close and personal to both Herring and his sparring partner and this affords the viewer the chance to feel the tension and contempt coming from both corners. Herring is funny when he needs to be but this is a mostly dramatic performance and it is refreshing to see him not only out of his comfort zone but also giving a good account of himself.
While You Were Away is both odd and familiar, in a way that almost sends up kitchen sink realism. Worth watching for both fans of Herring and fans of short film in general.