Written and directed by Philip Pugh, the mystery behind the ownership of a maroon jumper slowly unravels as a group of friends come together over FaceTime. Starring: Mathew Waters, Lillie Prowse, Jamie Barnard, Sophia Eleni, Michael Baughan, Blake Ellis, Richard Boland, Ellie Gill, Sam Williams, Ryan Wichert, Sally Humphreys Wood and Amanda Parkes.
Made during lockdown for the fantastic cause of raising money for NHS Charities Together and done following all guidelines for safety in this unpredictable time. The film follows many iterations of the same conversation, while Nic (Waters) frantically searches for a lost jumper, the others discuss the rather unattractive one that Jenny (Prowse) has found. Taking the seemingly never-ending restrictions that Coronavirus has put upon the film industry, then adding the extra challenge of making a memorable impression in less than 2-minutes with a 12 person cast, Pugh didn’t make it easy on himself but he pulls it off seamlessly.
The film has a very British sense of humour, it’s smart but silly, it has a slower reveal mixed with several funny and well written one-liners. It hits an impressive amount of humour within its miniscule runtime, it’s extremely well edited to never really take a breath and allow the script to bring a number of jokes through without feeling rushed or overlapping. It’s written in such a way that’s utterly relatable and has a very family or community feel to it, which is a lovely atmosphere to be presenting in these uncertain and stressful times. Not to mention that with all the connection struggles that many have dealt with in the past few months, the visual and audio quality are perfect. The parodied mobile networks are also a nice extra touch.
Twelve is a lot of people to fit into 2-minutes but it works unquestionably, each of the cast get their own moment, it may be short but they all get a shot at the comedy rather than simply an appearance. Waters, Prowse and Eleni get a chunk more of time than most and they each do particularly well with it, their timing, expressions and tone all provide a good personality to their characters, even in such a limited space. Collectively they have a wonderful chemistry, pushing that family style tone, in such a way that even though some of the connections are defined by their contact name, without it you could still assume them from the relationships that they’ve created.
The Maroon Jumper would sit happily in the world of Gavin and Stacey, it’s family friendly, quick and funny. It hits some classic comedy notes while feeling extremely natural and casual, the actors’ chemistry is solid and very enjoyable to watch. It’s a creative use of talent under the current restrictions and made for a brilliant cause, it’s a lovely way to encourage people to donate and a very light-hearted, fun couple of minutes.