Canadian Teen’s Short Film Hauntingly Captures How A Pandemic Loop Feels

Filmmaker Sarah Polley called it the "best film I've seen in a long time."

Wake up. Reminisce. Be productive (or not). Yell endlessly into the void.

Soul-crushing daily routine has become the norm during these months of pandemic isolation, and a Toronto-area teen has managed to capture the feelings of that endless loop in just three minutes.

Liv McNeil, a 15-year-old student at Etobicoke School of the Arts, has astonished many with her short film called “Numb.”

The film comes from McNeil’s real-life experience of numbness related to online learning.

“There’s no structure, no friends to motivate me, I’m just in my room all day everyday,” she told HuffPost Canada over Instagram.

“I’ve definitely felt numb and sad about quarantine, but I know isolation has been affecting people in different ways.”

- Liv McNeil, student filmmaker

McNeil told Toronto Life the film’s inspiration came from a school assignment, which she decided to interpret through the lens of isolation and mental health.

“I’ve definitely felt numb and sad about quarantine, but I know isolation has been affecting people in different ways,” she said. “This is just what I know from my experience.”

Against the stirring soundscape of “My Tears Are Becoming A Sea,” the young filmmaker’s final shots are impressive: McNeil expertly arranges a stop motion sequence of herself on her laptop. The segment lasts a minute, but took her 480 clips, she revealed to Toronto Life.

The praise has come in waves overnight for the Gen-Z creator, including a nod by Canadian director and actor Sarah Polley, as well as teachers and parents.

It took McNeil 21 days to shoot and create the video, and she has high hopes future artistic projects.

HuffPost Canada has reached out to McNeil for more details.

The teen has hinted at collaborations with her brother through the summer. Given that there’s not much to do at home for Canadians, we can probably expect more powerful films by the teen.

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