That Friend You Hate Image

That Friend You Hate

By Chris Salce | June 18, 2020

At one time or another, we have all had a friend or acquaintance that just loves to embarrass us. That Friend You Hate is about that friend. The short film centers on Andy (Sean Brannon), who can’t find someone to celebrate his birthday with, other than Rob (Will Cooper), his brash and obnoxious friend.

Andy always finds himself in all manner of awkward situations whenever Rob is near. The two go to a less-than-stellar concert that Rob finds pretty great. In a moment of happenstance, Andy runs into the girl he’s had a crush on for some time. Andy attempts to elicit some laughs out of her but strikes out. Then Andy walks into what he thinks is a party…well, it is a funeral party, but he doesn’t realize that until after cussing them out with Rob’s assistance. Just as Andy might think the night couldn’t get any worse, it does, when he finds himself at a diner with Rob, and his crush sitting just a few tables away.

“Andy always finds himself in all manner of awkward situations whenever Rob is near.”

By the end of the short, it turns out that Andy isn’t as different from Rob as he thinks. Andy is the one that puts himself in the uncomfortable spots; Rob is just there to have his back. I believe Andy realizes this closing out the film, so there is a payoff to all of the debauchery.

From the d**k jokes to the air guitar to its black-and-white cinematography, That Friend You Hate is heavily inspired by the films of Kevin Smith. There is even a shot of the two leads at a bar which is reminiscent of a scene from Chasing Amy, and the funeral subplot is imported from Clerks—the Kevin Smith influence is simply undeniable.

I found a few funny moments in the short with the most entertaining moment happening during the credits where the two leads make fun of Randy Newman and the way he sings the Toy Story theme. When the funniest part of That Friend You Hate is at the very end of the film, that’s not necessarily a good thing. Despite not being as funny as I had hoped it would be, the film’s outcome made it somewhat touching in a buddy film kind of way.

That Friend You Hate (2020)

Directed and Written: Eli Shapiro

Starring: Sean Brannon, Will Cooper, Ariella Segal, Miles G. Jackson, etc.

Movie score: 6/10

That Friend You Hate Image

"…heavily inspired by the films of Kevin Smith."

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