Written and directed by Charlene A. Carruthers, the fresh short film The Funnel sees a new narrative for black representation through a queer lens. We start with a young lady, Trina (Cat Christmas), having a dream — or is that a vision— in her apartment building. Now, audiences are taken back to the pre-Civil Rights era of Black America, in which Trina’s Aunt Taylor’s (Cat Christmas) “friend” Auburn (Vena Howard) visits her, and they get busy canoodling with one another.
Let’s get the bad out of the way first. This seems a little too short for this kind of scope and storytelling. Something like this needs to be expanded upon extensively. Running slightly over 16 minutes, it seems that viewers only get a dusting of the start of what is a good story. If anything, this seems like a teaser for a feature-length version. That’s not really a bad thing, but it leaves me wanting more.
“…Trina having a dream…taken back to the pre-Civil Rights era of Black America…”
Now that the bad is over and done with let’s get to what makes The Funnel different from other shorts. I went into the film thinking that this would be a Civil Rights-laden piece on the empowerment of black people. While it is empowering, its focus is on another group. For the short time that it has the audience’s attention, the filmmaker’s direction is spot-on, and Carruthers gets an array of fine performances from the cast.
While it is true that The Funnel could have been a lot longer, the cast and crew have a lot to be proud of. Carruthers utilizes great actors with a compelling story that you may not see every day. That is something that deserves a lot of praise.
"…deserves a lot of praise."