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Short film ‘Eat the Rainbow’ a musical fable big on humor and heart


Brian Benson’s Eat the Rainbow screens at this year’s Fort Myers Film Festival. The 19-minute short is a musical comedy about a blue stranger who moves into a neighborhood and causes panic.

To amplify, Eat the Rainbow is a musical fable about an odd yet kind man named Bayani who moves into a conservative suburban neighborhood and disrupts the otherwise comfortable homogeny. He doesn’t look or act like anyone else, and that causes fear, panic and eventually a demand for him to leave the neighborhood. Cousin Wonderlette befriends Bayani and together they take on the opposition led by manipulative and unscrupulous realtor Lobelia Gerber. While an unabashed modern-day Aesop’s Fable, the short is big on humor and heart.

Benson wrote and shot Eat the Rainbow long before the purported death of the American suburb became a political issue the 2020 presidential race. Of course, in the current formulation, low income housing and Cory Booker are the stand-ins for people of color. But race isn’t the only threat to the homogeny of neighborhoods. Anyone who is different to any noticeable extent is likely to have trouble fitting in to a pre-existing community, whether a clique in high school, the work place or a gated community. But Eat the Rainbow reminds us – perhaps idealistically – to look beneath the surface and measure people by the decency of their hearts or, to quote Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, “Judge a man not by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character.”

The film features Jason Brock as Christoff, Robert Caruso as Peter, Dolores Huerta as Wise Person, Ladybear as Vonda, Jaime Rush as Racist Family, with H.P. Mendoza in the role of Bayani and April Kidwell playing the part of Lobelia Gerber.

Eat the Rainbow screens in the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center during Shorts Block Ten, which begins at 7:10 p.m. on Saturday, October 24.

September 26, 2020.

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