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Sundance 2020 Review: "Daughter" (2019) ★★★★


© MAUR film

To play the role of a father is not an easy task for every man. While most men manage it easily, certain moments that are emotional for a child takes more than just attention to console the little one and explain, say, the meaning of life or death. “Daughter” is an interaction between a terminally ill father whose condition is akin to a bird that breaks a windowpane after impact.

A family puppet drama from writer/director Daria Kashcheeva, it follows Daughter, who visits her father in a hospital room. As she stands there watching life slowly fading away from him, a little bird breaks the windowpane on impact. As the bird is injured, Daughter picks her up and is momentarily taken back to her childhood when she had shared a similar moment with her Father. That little moment of misunderstanding as a child left a notable footprint in Daughter’s heart. However, now that she is grown up and holding, once again, a little bird in her hand, what is the difference between her dad and the bird? Can she create communication through the only thing that brought that disconnect between them in the first place?

“Daughter” is a fascinating story and a fabulous short film. In the span of twelve minutes, it unfolds the depth of a father-and-daughter relationship with such power that it’ll force the audience to re-think and re-consider life itself. It’s emotional, thought-provoking, and a simply beautiful piece that, without any dialogue, says more about love, grief, care, and forgiveness than any word could possibly do.

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