This is installment #14 of Shadow And Act’s #ShortFilmShoutout series
Black people are still largely underrepresented in the realm of animation, both in front of and behind the camera.
While many still believe it is strictly a playground for children’s storytelling, the world of animation can be an excellent platform for adult narrative, as exemplified by films like Grave of the Fireflies, Anomalisa, Fantastic Mr. Fox and Jamaal Bradley’s stellar short film, Substance.
Clocking in at five minutes and 19 seconds, Substance is a fine example of how you can tell a story without dialogue, with the use of visuals and music. Based on true events, Substance tells the story of two brothers whose relationship is at risk when one of them is revealed to be a drug dealer. At the center of this dilemma is a young girl who is revealed to be the daughter of the brother who is dealing drugs.
The story chronicles the heated conflict between the two brothers, which is eventually dissipated by the little girl, who is watching the verbal exchange from the staircase.
Watch the film below:
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