After first arriving on the festival circuit in 2020 as part of the official selection for Spark Animation and having since been selected for over 360 film festivals including 12 Oscar qualifying festivals, Roberto is already showing its strengths. In addition to these festival selections, Roberto has won over 170 awards including multiple Best Animated Short awards.
Having now seen the film it’s certainly clear where all this festival praise is coming from. Roberto is a beautifully animated and delightful short film. The film sees Roberto, who after 15 years passing is still wildly in love with his neighbour.
But she prefers to hide inside away from him, ashamed of her own body. And so Roberto sends over his own artwork professing his love for her along an old clothes lines connecting both of their windows. And Roberto has a plan to push her to face her own monsters.
What makes Roberto such a powerful film is the way in which it manages to get across all of its themes and messages about love and body positivity and it manages to do so without any dialogue whatsoever.
All of the subtleties come from the pitch-perfect animation. Every tiny detail and movement is dealt with so delicately that the characters don’t need to say a single word to each other and yet you can immediately feel every single beat of this film.
Roberto is an incredibly heart-warming short film and with beautiful music and lovely character design to accompany the splendid animation. We get to witness this relationship from both sides. We see Roberto drawing hearts for her, but we also see her ashamed of the way she looks and not wanting to see or talk to Roberto. And the film manages to deliver something poignant and moving.
After watching Roberto, all of the praise it’s received from festivals is abundantly clear. It’s a sweet film that manages to say so much about love and body positivity whilst really doing so very little. It’s only ten minutes long and has no dialogue in it at all and yet that doesn’t stop Roberto and its filmmaking team. It doesn’t need any tear-jerking dialogue or anything flashy to hit all of the right emotions inside of you. The beautiful animation manages to do that all on its own. It’s a very lovingly created short film, full of joy and colour and it’s very hard not to fall in love with.
DIRECTOR: Carmen Córdoba
RUNTIME: 10 minutes