Tribeca 2022: “The Resemblance”

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Different people have different priorities in life. What may be important for us can be less significant for others. We take things such as family for granted. Having children for some is a joy of life while for others is a burden one runs away from. It’s life, one way or another, that has its script written for each individual to bring us all to one point – to face what we have done and watch the consequences of our actions whether we like it or not.

“The Resemblance”, written and directed by David Nguyen, focuses on a grieving couple over the loss of their son. Upon arriving at the “rental family” agency, the two request for an actor that will resemble their son. Just for one night. The man, in the beginning, is very skeptical and asks whether there’s a money-back guarantee if the result won’t be what they have paid for. But when the guest arrives, their son, they realize it’s much bigger, deeper, and more meaningful than what they were expecting.

The story itself is beautiful, therefore, it translates eloquently into this truly moving short film. At some point, the father asks the son, Daniel, about his funeral and the eulogy he gave. Then, suddenly, the son replies, do you remember what you told me before I left home? You told me, I am better off dead. That line alone is gut-wrenching and so painful, it may resonate with many viewers, which I hope, it will not. That’s why the story works. Yes, it’s more like fiction. But there’s a truth to this. We can’t take our loved ones for granted. We can’t turn our back on those who expect us to give them a hand of help. Because when we do that, who they will go to ask for help? If we fail them, everyone will. And that’s what David Nguyen perfectly delivers within twelve minutes of the film’s running time – more than enough to have your life changed upside down.

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