Best friends Lucy and Julie are spending their summer with Lucy’s grandma, living out of her pink bungalow home.
It’s a lazy summer, and the two girls spend a lot of time in their own world, talking and playing games, all while trying to avoid a creepy neighbor who keeps knocking on their door. But then Lucy runs out of her anti-depressant, and the two girls may have to venture into the larger world outside of their beloved bubble, forcing them into an unwanted confrontation.
Director Mary Neely’s dark comedic short is a gem of invention and imagination, exploring the rich emotional terrain of female friendship with great wit and insight, using every tool in the cinematic toolbox to create a deeply feminist — and highly entertaining — piece of cinema.
The foundation of the film is its sharp, intelligent and very funny screenplay, written by Macey Isaacs and Jenny Leiferman, which offers a potent blend of one-line zingers with solid storytelling that deftly builds up suspense when it counts.
The friendship between Lucy and Julie is both a haven from the larger world and its difficulties, but also a challenge. One girl wants to escape the confines of their magical but cloistered world and face her issues head-on, while the other is too terrified of the outside and wants to avoid responsibility.
The conflict offers the opportunity to build an authentic relationship between the two, bolstered by terrific performances by the young lead actors. As a result, the film explores topics like mental health, the burdens of “adulting” and what it means to be mature, with great warmth and humor that never minimizes the real weight they carry.
But perhaps the most immediately distinctive aspect of the film is its visuals. The titular pink trailer is a marvel of production design, infusing the film with a sense of whimsy and girlishness. (As it turns out, the home was already decorated by its owner, and the filmmaking team didn’t have to change the decor.)
The use of natural light gives the film a sunlit, richly vibrant look that is equal parts dreamy and cloying as the story requires, and the camerawork and editing is notable for punching up moments of offbeat humor, especially in the cutaways and framing. The adroit mix of visual naturalism and formality offers viewers intimacy with the two young protagonists, while capturing a sense of their uniquely cloistered emotional landscape.
With strong visuals, warm performances and witty dialogue, “Pink Trailer” is an affectionate portrait of youth, innocence and enduring, authentic friendship in the face of life’s challenges. The transition from childhood to young adulthood is never simple, but it’s infinitely easier when your BFF is at your side through it all.