I don't remember if I've ever written a review for a short film, so let's just take this as my first. I guess, in many ways, a short film is like a poem compared to a novel: condensed, intense and where less is more. Indeed, "Little Note" is perfect in its length and aura.
It did bother me at first: What can a film tell within 15 minutes? "Little Note" has a simple plot: The unconditional love and support shown by a single mother for her only child. I think it takes a high level of skill from its director and writer, Royston Tan, to tell a story this short and simple, yet to be able to move its audiences to tears, without leaving any gap in narrative. To me, this is most admirable.
Perhaps the film-length helped, but I found myself hanging on to each vivid, picturesque image, long after they passed. Some of my favourites inevitably involve the brilliant clouds, green hills and bicycle rides - all simple things ascended to exquisiteness.
Set against an olden days kampong, the cast put up more than a competent, seamless performance. The dialogues are spare and kept simple, leaving the beautiful score, composed by Funkie Monkies’ Eric Ng and Jim Lim, to work its sentimental charm.