Harvie Krumpet

by Gabriel Shapiro

HDir. Adam Elliot

Harvie Krumpet was born. After that things would rarely go so well for him again.

In this delightfully dark claymation short, showing as part of the International Shorts Showcase, we are taken on the difficult, sometimes dismal journey that life can be.

Harvie, referred to occasionally as the “retarded migrant” is an unlucky soul who had things tough from the get go. His life is changed on a fairly regular basis, usually by some visitation of misfortune, but occasionally of his own volition, as when he reads the quote “carpe diem” on a statue of the Roman poet Horace, and decides he simply must join a nudist colony.

This little film is all that that bloated exercise in boomer nostalgia “Forrest Gump” only wishes it was. None of the sappy filler, none of the flinching at misery. If it’s cute, that is mainly as a result of its cast being animated clay caricatures.

This is certainly one of the funniest outings to be screened at this year’s festival. Be prepared to laugh out loud, and as much as your sides will ache you’ll probably also feel more than a few painful twinges of the less physical variety. One cannot help but feel for the plight of this little clay weirdo. There is a lot of life distilled into its 20-odd minutes, and for all of the silliness, there are some genius observations about the world and the human condition.