Pregnancy Test Short Film Review

Pregnancy Test (2021), directed by Matthew Sawyer | SHORT FILM REVIEW

Emma wants a baby. Lucas doesn’t. Cue honest conversations and miscommunication with a sting in the tale in Pregnancy Test (2021), a short film from writer/director Matthew Sawyer.

You can watch PREGNANCY TEST at the bottom of this review

A simple story about a complex subject

The 12-minute film is mainly a two-hander between actors Emily Rose Holt and Jack McGarry, playing Emma and Lucas, with short appearances by their respective mum (Lee Saunders) and dad (Roger Middleton), trying to give helpful advice and offering cups of tea.

Pregnancy Test 2021 Matthew Sawyer
Pregnancy Test (2021), a short film from writer-director Matthew Sawyer

It is a simple story about a complex subject, as we meet the key players on the verge of a decision that will make or break their relationship.

The film economically gives us a sense of the backstory of the central characters. These are conversations they have had before. For Emma, there needs to be the potential in their relationship for a baby – no room for manoeuvre. Lucas doesn’t know what he wants. They both struggle to find a compromise. It is in these moments that Pregnancy Test finds a rhythm in the veiled honesty and raw relatability of its central characters’ situation.

Pregnancy Test: a great showreel for all concerned

There is nothing particularly groundbreaking here.

I was struck, however, by tasteful direction from Sawyer, who includes some promising flourishes that give some needed colour to his otherwise rather workmanlike script. There is an effective use of natural light throughout, which grounds the film in realism.

All in all, Pregnancy Test amounts to a useful showreel for all concerned. Natural performances are to the fore from the actors, with particular mention to a short, sweet and funny performance by Katie Mae Carden in a sucker punch ending that reminds us that life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.


Editor & Artwork: Richard Williams
Images courtesy of: Matthew Sawyer

2.5 out of 5 stars

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Teacher. Musician. Writer. Fascinated by film. Co-creator of Janus Film Review.

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