In times as bleak as the last twelve months have been for so many of us, it’s an acquired skill to have a dark sense of humour. First-time director Zach Woods, who you might recognise as awkward Pied Piper employee Zach Woods in HBO’s Silicon Valley (or, more recently, Matt Spencer in Avenue 5), brings us a precious slice of black comedy in the form of David.
Starring comedy legend Will Ferrell and The Good Place‘s William Jackson Harper, David is a short but sweet tale about a young man (Harper) whose emergency therapy session is abruptly interrupted by the son of his therapist (Ferrell).
As Ferrell pleads with his son (Fred Hechinger, News of the World) to take their discussion outside for the sake of his troubled patient, it becomes clear that those who help resolve others’ issues for a living don’t necessarily have everything worked out at home.
Harper does an excellent job as the straight man, doing his best to keep the peace between the son and Ferrell, who gives a slightly more subdued performance than usual – of course, until everything truly kicks off, leading to a pleasantly goofy and sweet conclusion.
The dynamic between Harper and Ferrell works well thanks to a screenplay penned by Woods and co-writer Brandon Gardner, which plays to both leads’ comedic chops in this single-location short.
David made its premiere at the 2020 Cannes Film Festival in its Short Film Competition before heading to TIFF, Telluride and will soon be available for screening at the Oscar-qualifying Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival.