Last week VICE debuted the short film Bear by Nash Edgerton, so this week I’d like to highlight its predecessor, Spider. Spider follows the well-intentioned Jack, played by Edgerton, who is always on uncertain terms with his girlfriend, Jill. Things between the two of them would be alright if he’d just heed his mom’s advice, “It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye.”
I think everyone can relate to Jack, who’s always running headfirst into things and not thinking them through. You can see the climax in Spider coming a mile away, but when it comes you realize objects far away are a lot bigger and more fucked than they appear. Once you make it out of Spider’s web, be sure to check outBear if you haven’t already or watch it again to catch all of the hidden gems you might have missed the first time around. And remember, always listen to your mom.
Watch Spider here
[Editor’s Note: Welcome to “I’m Short, Not Stupid,” a weekly column focused on highlighting rare and obscure short films. Enjoy this flick (the video is at the bottom) and check back next week for another peculiar adventure in the art of short moving pictures.]
Bear is not a classic story of two lovers, two lovers fighting, two lovers making up, and two lovers living happily ever after. Jack, played by director Nash Edgerton, is a fuck up with a good heart. He also always seems to have something up his sleeve. The film begins with sage words from Jill, Jack’s ex-girlfriend who went all the way down the drain in Nash’s previous short film, Spider (which will debut on VICE next week). Unfortunately, Jack’s new girlfriend, Emelie, doesn’t know about his pension for pranks and has no idea the wild ride in store for her. Both Bear and Spider are crafted around the premise of a boyfriend messing up and attempting to right his wrong with a theatrical gesture.
Nash has been on the scene for some time, making his mark as an actor, stuntman, writer, and director. While doing stunts for big budget features—like the Matrix trilogy andthe Star Wars prequels—he made a number of music videos, including three for Bob Dylan. His original work is darkly comic, violent, and expertly executed. And Bear is no exception.
There are many reasons Bear is so effective: good actors, realistic characters, beautiful cinematography, and a smart script. However, what really takes it over the top is Nash’s closely controlled reveals in story and character that string the audience along so we’re just as stunned as Emelie is when Jack makes his big “transformation.”