Animated film highlights the power of friendship



“Olga,” by Kai Pannen, is playing as part of Sarasota Film Festival’s Shorts 16: youthFEST Animated Shorts III at 12:15 p.m. Sunday, April 15, at Regal Hollywood 20.

The Film Festival’s Shorts 16 will include screenings of: “Bonifacio in Summertime,” by Pierre-Luc Granjon; “Cup of Tea,” by Fernanda Ribiero; “Fitting In,” by Taylor Annisette; “Floyd the Android,” by Jonathan Lyons; “Frogweather,” by Pauline Kortmann; “Ginjas,” by Zepe and Humberto Santana; “Growing Up,” by Lucas Ridley; “Mechanical Musical Marvel,” by Chris Randall; “ Rumeurs,” by Frits Standaert; “Superdad and Pelé,” by Annette S. Helland; and “Tim & Ted,” by Fernanda Riberio.

Tickets to the screening are $12 for adults and free for children.

Tickets are on sale now at

Connor Flaherty
Seventh grade
Pine View School

Even the best people have the worst days. In “Olga,” a short film that is cute and full of meaning, Hilke Mayer and Kai Pannen portray a story about alienation, depression and how people who are depressed are not alone.

    The film tells the story of an energetic, fun-loving pig named Olga, who normally loves to be around her friends and have fun, but every so often feels a little depressed and lonely. This depression is embodied by a gray howling in her stomach that causes Olga to act almost like a whole different pig. In the end, Olga sees her friend, Ben the dog, who notices something wrong with Olga. She tells him about the gray feeling, and she finds she is not alone. Ben, who has also had this gray feeling of depression, reminds Olga that everyone has those days. By the end of the film, Ben shows Olga the “cure,” which is a big hug. When Ben hugs Olga, the gray feeling turns red, and Olga turns back into her normal, fun-loving self.

The film is designed to be a children’s cartoon portraying real-world problems. Children will love the animated characters, such as Olga the pig and Ben the dog. Although this is a good movie for children, it should be watched by older children who can read well, as the film is in German with English subtitles.

Overall, I think the eight-minute film was great for older children and adults. It portrays real-world problems like alienation and depression in a kid-friendly cartoon.

Micah Gallagher
Eighth grade
Sarasota School of Arts & Science

The film that I watched was “Olga,” by Kai Pannen. Olga and Ben are the main characters. This short film was great! The message portrayed in this film is clear, and the illustrator did a fantastic job.

This film started with Olga out with her friends and having a great time, until this bad feeling in her stomach comes about.

When Olga wakes up the next morning, the bad feeling in her stomach is still there. When she goes for a walk, she meets her friend Ben. Ben tells Olga about when he had that same bad feeling. While Ben and Olga were talking, Olga had noticed that the bad feeling went away.

The moral was: When you’re down, go hang out with someone and talk about it, instead of being along and staying upset about it.

The personality fit the animals the directors chose to represent.

The best scene was when Ben helped Olga feel better by being there for her as a friend, having someone to talk to and showing how much he cared about what she had to say. To have a friend, you have to be a friend.

The music played along to show the mood in the film. When Olga was having a good time, and when she was happy, the music was upbeat. But, when the feeling of being alone and sad came into the film, the music slowed down and had lower tones.

“Olga” was a great short film! My final opinion on the film was that it was wonderful. The illustrations were superb, and the moral behind it was something that everyone can relate to.


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