Made Public

We love our social media, don’t we? There’s a bit of narcissism one must have to be an active member of Facebook and Twitter. Please, everyone! Like my picture. Comment on my status. Post a meme of outrage. We’re addicted to like, comments, and shares.

Foster Wilson’s short film, Made Public, tackles this phenomenon. From Brian Leahy’s script, the short opens with the groom, Dave (Josh Zuckerman) standing alone at the altar in a church with some outraged friends and family members. Apparently, David posted something on Facebook last night that threatens not only his reputation but also his wedding. Everyone in the church is either mocking Dave or increasingly disappointed in him.

“…starts like an SNL sketch and suddenly gets serious…”

What I like about Made Public is that it takes a simple idea of a public Facebook poll about whether he should go through with his wedding.  Rather than turning it into 13 minutes of yuk, yuk silliness, he instead makes a statement about this need to engage everyone and the world in our everyday decisions to the point when we can’t make any decision on our own…even the big one. Are you able to decide for yourself anymore, or are you going to make it based on mob popularity?

The film itself is fun to watch. It starts like an SNL sketch and suddenly gets serious when Dave is face-to-face with his fiancé Sydney (Jeanine Mason). Dave’s long walk to Sydney and their return to the alter is a single extended shot with Jeanine Mason giving a thoughtful, compelling speech about social media and individuality to the indecisive groom. So effective that at some point you wonder why she’s putting up with the emasculated Dave.

Made Public is a wonderfully produced and intelligent short, that balances it’s sketch comedy elements with an actual thoughtful message behind it.

Made Public (2019) Directed by Foster Wilson. Written by Brian Leahy. Starring Jeanine Mason, Josh Zuckerman. Made Public screened at the 2019 Palm Springs Film Festival.

7.5 out of 10 stars

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