Rebuild Me is a short comedy about a young man who, after being unexpectedly dumped by his long-term girlfriend, sets out to find himself and discover his purpose in life. Jay attempts to discover who he really is through various methods, and although the film is only nine minutes long, his quest touches upon a variety of different topics, from love, to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to coupons.
The short begins with Jay reciting that it ‘all began with a dream’. A dream which involves a spatula. Not a good start, but stay with it. Perhaps the most interesting part of the film is the way it straddles two genres; it slides between comedy and philosophy and does so with ease. At times, Jay is joking to the audience about (electric) train-sets, and then he suddenly switches to an explanation of how individuals change their lives just to become more attractive to other human beings. Deep. Surprisingly, and to the film’s credit, these tonal transitions don’t feel clunky at all.
Jay Cowle plays the protagonist who skillfully turns from happiness to sadness in the blink of an eye. He tries many different tactics to help his recovery; narrated by himself, he attempts to find solace in nature, drugs and other distractions. However, some of the jokes fall flat, and some of the other characters in the story try a little too hard to be funny, and somewhat tarnish the high standards set by Cowle.
Rebuild Me is the odyssey of Jay, starting as a dismal shadow of what he was once (due to the break up) to questioning the apparent fake nature of himself, and eventually finding new love through a pizza box. What could easily be a bad film (and seems to be going in that direction at the start) becomes a laugh-a-minute, tightly focused journey of rediscovery.