A mysterious, sexually-charged 17-minute short film from Brazil, The Gift follows Zeca, played by Luiz Felipe Bianchini.
Opening with his narration, we learn that he is lonely – searching night after night for a lover who has yet to appear. When he cuts out of work to buy his sister a birthday present, he instead meets up with Lino, an attractive stranger played by Fabricio Licursi.
The two men share a strange sexual encounter in an empty apartment. Later, when Zeca arrives at his sister’s birthday party, he gets an unexpected surprise of his own.
Filming in a spare, naturalistic style, director Daniel Wierman breaks up scenes of mundane, day-to-day activities with sublimely-staged eroticism. The Gift doesn’t offer much in the way of narrative – if anything, the film ends up leaving audiences with more questions than answers – but it does an excellent job presenting the feelings and deep interior worlds of the characters.