Watch: “The Referee” comedy short about a youth sports referee versus his parents
by Alex Billington
August 5, 2022
“We will resume the game.” The most annoying thing about youth sports isn’t the game itself or the changed rules, it’s all the hysterical parents getting upset about just about anything. Alright Alright ? Or is it also the rotten referees who don’t really care about the game? Probably both. The Ref is a goofy comedy short directed by filmmaker Peter Edlund, co-written by Peter and his brother Ian Edlund. The short is about a young referee who struggles to maintain control of a 2nd grade basketball game. The children are not the problem. Everything falls apart when he argues with one of the parents, although each of the adults here is annoying. But that’s the point. The Ref star co-writer Ian Edlund as referee, with Frank Boyd, Emily Chisholm, Kevin Kelly, Keaton Whittaker, Christopher Goodson, Ian Lerch. It’s so good that it plays like a documentary and not a fictional movie, like they just walked around in a game and then turned on the camera.
Thanks to Short of the Week for featuring this one. Short description on YouTube: “A referee struggles to maintain control of a 2nd grade basketball game.” The Ref is directed by Seattle-based filmmaker Peter Edlund – you can see more of his work on his Vimeo or visit the website of his production company Visual Pollution. The screenplay is written by Peter Edlund and Ian Edlund. Based on a story by Ian Edlund. After being prompted to come up with an idea, Ian was “”crossing Atlantic Avenue, I saw an image of a referee slamming a ground ball in frustration. “This random scene is what Ian considers the first spark of inspiration for The Ref, as he was transported into his experiences watching his brother in youth basketball.” Produced by Megan Leonard. Co-produced by Séverine Tibi and Anaïs Calmels. With photography by Ty Migota and music by Erik Blood. For more information, visit the film’s website. To watch more short films, click here. Thoughts?