Review: The Rainbow Bridge (Sundance 2024 Shorts)

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Title: The Rainbow Bridge
Director: Dimitri Simakis
Starring: Thu Tran, Fat Tony, Heather Lawless
Runtime: 12 mins

What It Is: Tina and her elderly dog visit a mysterious clinic offering human-to-pet communication. Two sinister doctors uncover an otherworldly bond between them that transcends time and space. They might be the key to something greater… but at what cost?

What We Think: This is a delightfully weird short, with a look that is very much evocative of  1970/80’s analog commercials, an aesthetic that director Simakis and executive producer Suki Rose both adore due to its storytelling capabilities. Building off of the zany presentation, the performances fit right into the mold; offkey in a way that is melodious with their vision. What is most intriguing about this short is the way in which it tackles one of the biggest hurdles life has to offer – the death of a pet. I’m sure that many can relate when I say that it’s a crushing blow and deeply saddening when it does occur, though The Rainbow Bridge offers a strangely gratifying look at the affair within a sci-fi tinted premise that bursts with life onscreen.

Our Grade: A; It’s an odd, whimsical and colorful multi-hyphenate effort with a scratchy nostalgic filter that serves as a conduit for its dreamy subject. I had the chance to sit down with Simakis, Suki Rose and Thu Tran to discuss their thoughts on the film, the retro/VHS look, and what they think of the concept of pet afterlife. Premieres January 22nd at the Ray in Park City.

Make sure you check out our interview with the star and filmmakers.

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