If Anything Happens, I Love You

A review of the 2020 short film “If Anything Happens, I Love You”

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“If Anything Happens, I Love You” moment.

If Anything Happens, I Love You is an animated short film that was released to Netflix, November 20, 2020. It focuses on two grieving parents who lost their daughter to a school shooting. At only 12 minutes long, this film directed by William McCormack and Micheal Govier packs an emotional punch that would most likely make even those who don’t normally cry at movies, do just that; ball their eyes out. 

The main message of this tearjerker may be hidden to some, but it is that memories are, and always should be, important, especially when you are facing a tragic loss in your family or close circle of people. A loss can put a strain on relationships, and this is shown very clearly in the film. The husband and wife don’t talk to each other, look each other in the eyes, or spend time together all that much. Only when a memory is brought into light do they begin to acknowledge their situation and begin the very long healing process together. 

The beginning of the film introduces us to the parents, and when I saw how sad they looked, I knew I was going to cry the entire time. The parents are eating dinner, not talking to each other or looking at each other; black shapes form above them and show them fighting with each other. Both the husband and the wife see, hear, and feel things that remind them of their deceased daughter. The most memorable, for me at least, is when a soccer ball falls off the washing machine and hits a record-player in the daughter’s bedroom. “1950” by King Princess begins to play, and it brings the story back to when their little girl was still alive. Oh boy, here’s where the waterworks start. I just bawled my eyes out about 5 minutes into the movie.

With only music, muted and dull colors (with the exception of a few colored objects), and a deep story behind the animation, this short film conveys one of the most heartbreaking situations someone could be in, especially as a parent. Like Fantasia, shapes, colors, and lighting are used to show changes in the mood and what we, as the audience, should focus on.                                             Small details and objects also depict the melancholy and gloomy atmosphere; two examples of this is the dead flower on their dining-room table and the dead plants in their garden. This shows the audience that they haven’t felt motivated, or have forgotten to take care of the plants in their home, because they’re in such a difficult situation. 

This affected me so deeply that it opened my eyes to the pain that too many people experience and that we should be doing more to stop these things from happening. The song “1950” by King Princess fits so perfectly with this movie, and I feel like songs bring out the intended emotion of the movie/video as well. The end of the film really got me because it depicts their daughter walking into her school, and the tragedy takes place, but only with flashing blue and red lights, and sirens. The parents are brought back together by the memory of their beautiful child, and the movie ends. All in all, I highly recommend this short film, not only because it is a quick watch, but also because it deals with such a difficult and emotional topic, that it makes you think about it, rather than avoid it more. Hopefully this short drama will affect you as much as it affected me.