2007 SUNDANCE SHORT! In the plethora of reasons why he didn’t get the job, a wrinkled shirt is the least of Mark’s problems.
Director Burmeister examines a man so lost in every single aspect of his life, a man so doomed to failure, that he’s a rather self-defeating persona who just doesn’t live up to expectations. After a hectic morning of preparing for a job interview, Mark arrives to the interview barely shaved, in a wrinkled dressy shirt, and instantly we know he’s failed.
He’s incoherent, barely present, has no idea how to approach the interview, his etiquette is severely lacking, and he doesn’t even buy his own words that he feeds to the interviewer, which we can plainly see from his expression.
With only a slight exchange and apathetic moments of silence between Mark and his wife, who looks on in a mixture of pity and disgust, we can already sense the tension. He now has to defend the shirt, and think of different reasons why the interview failed. All of which don’t point to him.
Mark has growing up to do, Mark has to get himself together, and Mark now has to prove to his wife that he’s not a total f**k up in life, and as a husband. The quiet disappointment from his put upon mate, and sheer discontent between him and his wife speaks sounds more than any piece of dialogue can hope. She’s unhappy, and he’s running out of time.
Burmeister makes it very clear. In Mark’s relationship, a wrinkled shirt is the least of his problems.