Struggling with your own self can be more painful than any other form of suffering. ‘Chasing’ is a short film that approaches this idea, starting from a man’s addiction to gambling that pushes him to the limit of self-destruction. Obviously, such a scenario is generally tragic, and the expectations of the spectators are largely confirmed. However, directors Steven Calvert & Thomas Blackburne do not want at all costs to provide viewers an unpredictable experience, since they create this film within an intimate realism formula, while capturing with painful authenticity the emotional degradation of a character inspired by our immediate universe. Hence, this project is designed not on the principles of a complex narrative thread, of an action full of adrenaline, but as an attempt to depict the slow and implosive descent of the protagonist into the abyss of his own illusory goals. Its most important aspect doesn’t essentially concern the gambler’s interaction with the people around him, but the confrontation with his own endurance. Not coincidentally, this short film is conceived as a burst of contradictory energies between the social and the intimate self through which the protagonist’s reality is syncopated by details from his imaginary projections, while they are coagulated into a visual metaphor of a football game where the gambler plays against his own reflection.


Unable to resonate with his own reality, Danny becomes increasingly preoccupied with his passion for gambling. In a short period of time, his indifference will leave painful wounds both in the souls of those close to him and in his already fragile sensitivity.


Even if the short film doesn’t push the inner conflict of the characters towards a hysterical-psychotic realism, wanting to aggress or fascinate through its emotional outbursts, the project has the great merit of illustrating a situation conditioned by the parameters of banality, by the limits of a recognizable or maybe familiar situation. Therefore, the connection of empathy (or antipathy) between the spectator and the protagonist is not forced by a visceral cinematic style, nor is it imposed by a violent directorial vision with moralizing valences. In fact, Steven Calvert & Thomas Blackburne prove a good narrative dosage, orchestrating a kind of  „duplication” through which the exterior and the interior aspirations of the protagonist coexist on the screen in a well-proportioned image. Thus, the montage mainly dominated by lightning transitions between reality and the metaphorical projection of the main character’s expectations suggests a silent cry, inducing viewers the imminence of a total disaster. And yet, the strength of  ‘Chasing’ doesn’t consist in its more or less predictable finale, but in the silent, slow and insidious progress of a destructive addiction.