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Naira pitches a new sport to her husband in this strange, sweet portrait of marriage

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In the short film Pingpongs, the UK filmmaker George Gendi pairs audio from two candid exchanges between his parents with charmingly minimalistic pen-drawn animation. In the lighthearted first exchange, his mother Naira ponders the possibility of a game – in which pingpong balls are shot through basketball hoops – to her somewhat dubious husband, Nagui. In the second exchange, just before bedtime, Naira laments having missed her father’s funeral years ago, and wonders whether Nagui could have done more to help her attend it. A delightful interlude of improvised song between the pair connects the two scenes. With pingpong serving as both a subject and a metaphor, the short captures the back-and-forths of a decades-long loving relationship – distinctive in their details, but perhaps familiar in their broad strokes.

Via Animated Documentary

Director: George Gendi

22 January 2024
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