Sometimes, you have to laugh.
That may seem like odd advice to give at this moment in history because, right now, there’s a lot of people who are convinced that we’ll never share a joke or a smile again. They look at the news about the spread of COVID-19 and the empty grocery store shelves and everything else that’s going on and they say to themselves, “Laughter is dead.” Of course, what they’re failing to understand is that often, it’s laughter and comedy that help people survive tough times. It’s much easier to deal with a problem if you laugh at it first. Sacrificing one’s sense of humor is the first step towards surrender and surrendering is not what we, as a people, are about.
The 7 and a half-minute short film, $tack$, opens with a familiar cinematic situation. Two men are in an underground garage, standing next to their car and waiting for someone else to arrive. They exchange a few words, the type of tough guy talk that we’ve heard in countless crime films. Both of them are armed. Both of them know that the situation is serious. Both of them are ready for whatever happens.
Another vehicle pulls up and more people get out. More guns are displayed. A sell is being made. The second group of people is assured that they’re getting the best, “pure white.”
As I said, it’s a situation that we’ve seen in countless crime films but this one has a humorous COVID-19 inspired twist, one that I will not spoil here. It’s a clever little twist, though and it’s one to which everyone — and I do mean everyone — will be able to relate. Making his directorial debut, Gerald Webb plays the action straight, even when $tack$‘s main joke is revealed. The audience may laugh but, to the characters in the film, there’s nothing more important than the business transaction being conducted in that underground garage. And really, who can blame them?
A rap and a music video play over the end credits, on that not only details the hardships of living in the COVID-19 era but which also pays tribute to all of the essential workers on the front lines, which is a nice touch. If nothing else, it’ll make you feel better about the times that we’re living than watching a hundred “this is the new normal” brand name commercials will.
Be sure to track down $tack$. It’ll make you laugh and that’s an important thing right now.