Apple TV+ is now getting into the business of Pixar-inspired animated shorts. They are even enlisting John Lasseter (credited as an Executive Producer) to help.
The story behind the heartwarming animated short, BLUSH, is a sad one. Director Joe Mateo lost his wife to breast cancer. That real-life narrative inspired this out-of-this-world story that hits mainly the right amount of tear-inducing beats. It reminded me of the little played indie videogame, THAT DRAGON, CANCER. In that game, two parents are coping with the loss of their kid to cancer. The creators used the video game to process their loss.
Now Joe Mateo is doing the same. But instead of losing his kid to cancer, he lost his wife. BLUSH plays like an over-extended sequence of the beginning of UP. It’s a powerful ten-minute montage that will have audiences reaching for the kleenex, but it will not emotionally shake you to your core as the beginning UP did. And that’s okay. This is more light-hearted stuff.
At its core, BLUSH is about the HAMILTON quote – “What is a legacy? It’s planting seeds in a garden you never get to see.” Despite the interspecies theme, that legacy is and always will be – children.
It’s available on Apple TV+.