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Review of “Anxiety” Short Film

The short film Anxiety introduces the viewers to the life of a young and beautiful girl, Madeleine, who is suffering from anxiety. It is essential to say that every person has experienced anxiety and tension at least once in their life before an exam or an important meeting. Anxiety is an emotional experience in which a person is uncomfortable with an uncertain perspective. Needless to say, normal anxiety helps people adapt to different situations. It increases in conditions of the high subjective significance of choice, external threat, lack of information, or time. Nevertheless, there is also pathological anxiety, in the occurrence of which not only external circumstances play a role, but also internal physiological reasons.

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The film begins with Madeleine entering her big house and listening to a message from her parents. They inform her about their decision to go on a little last-minute vacation to Mexico. Additionally, her mother asks her to take care of the house while they are gone and keep it clean. After some time, Madeleine receives a message from her best friend, Kasandra “Are you going to come out tonight?” (Anxiety – Short Film). The first time the viewers meet Madeleine’s anxiety presented in the form of her alter ego, that ironically notices, “Do you really think that they want to go out with you? Come on, Madeleine, they pity you” (Anxiety – Short Film). Therefore, the filmmaker makes the viewers believe that anxiety is a severe problem because, honestly, Madeleine has no reason to doubt herself and be scared that her friends do not want to spend time with her.

Next, Madeleine answers Kasandra that she cannot wait to meet and starts putting makeup on. The filmmaker uses rhetorical appeal called Pathos which refers to the emotions stirred in the viewer while watching the movie (Varpio 209). Thus, the film author is seeking to trigger specific emotional reactions in this short film. While the audience can see that the main character is genuinely gorgeous, Madeleine’s inner voice tells her, “What’s wrong, did you actually think for a second that makeup was going make you attractive? Because you are wrong” or “That outfit definitely makes you look fat, let’s try another” (Anxiety – Short Film). She takes a dress, and her inner voice claims, “Well, let’s just face it, you are going to look fat in anything” (Anxiety- Short Film). She walks away to a different room and tries to study and hears again, “What is good in studying? You are not going to pass no matter how hard you try; no one believes in you, you cannot even believe in yourself” (Anxiety – Short Film). Consequently, a logical fallacy in this film is that Madeleine considers herself unworthy. Notably, errors in reasoning that make arguments invalid are called logical fallacies (Macri 155). Surprisingly, the real Madeleine tries hard to overcome her anxiety and objects to her inner self by saying, “You can do it, just breather, ignore it” (Anxiety – Short Film). However, the inner voice states again that it is not going anyway, and there is no way to escape from hearing it.

Finally, she cancels her plans; her friend Kasandra calls her and tries to change Madeline’s decision. Nonetheless, Madeline states that she is not feeling up to it and wants to stay at home. Kasandra says that she and other friends miss her, and she knows that Madeleine is overthinking, which is her biggest problem. Madeline admits that it is not that simple but promises to go out with them next time. The next scene shows Madeline in the bed, alter ego sitting next to her and telling “It is the perfect time to get you while you are trying to sleep” (Anxiety – Short Film). Moreover, Madeline’s inner voice creates new issues and insecurities by mentioning that the guy she likes has not texted her back. “After all, you are not that special, Madeleine” (Anxiety – Short Film). In illustrating the conversation between Madeleine and her alter ego, the filmmaker uses the tone as a powerful tool to show that Madeleine’s inner voice is much stronger and Madeleine herself cannot confront it. Thus, it is easy to assume what are Madeleine’s fears. She is scared of being alone and that her friends talk to her only because they pity her; in addition, she has insecurities about her appearance and intelligence.

While laying down and anxiously thinking about herself, Madeleine hears her phone ringing: it is Kasandra. The music starts playing, and the audience can see how finally Madeleine starts acting against her inner voice. Thus, she gets ready, applies makeup, and chooses a pretty dress to meet her friends. Her inner voice objects to her all the time “What are you doing? We have talked about it! You are making a mistake!” (Anxiety – Short Film).

To summarize, the movie ends positively because Madeleine calls her friends and says that she is on her way. The inner voice tries to stop her “They do not want you there, you cannot just go” (Anxiety – Short Film). In reply, Madeleine says with a smile on her face, “Watch me!” (Anxiety – Short Film). Thus, through his effective persuasive technique, the filmmaker makes the viewer believe that everyone can overcome the anxiety.

Works Cited

Anxiety – Short Film. A Mike Smigiel Visual, 2018. Youtube, Web.

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Macri, James V. “Logically fallacious.” American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics 155.2 (2019): 155-156.

Varpio, Lara. “Using rhetorical appeals to credibility, logic, and emotions to increase your persuasiveness.” Perspectives on medical education 7.3 (2018): 207-210.

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