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Film / Sniffer

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Sniffer is a 2006 short film (ten minutes) written and directed by Bobbie Peers.

It is set in a strange world where gravity does not exist—or, more precisely, people float away into the air if they are not somehow tethered. People sleep strapped into beds, and when they get out of bed they wear heavy metal boots. As a consequence everyone walks with a slow, heavy gait.

The film begins with the nameless protagonist somehow coming unbuckled and floating up to the ceiling. His wife pulls him back down with a hook, and eventually he goes to work. He works as a sniffer, one of several in a lab where they test the efficacy of deodorant by sniffing the armpits of sweaty fat guys on exercise machines. He is hard at work sniffing fat guy's pits, when a pigeon flies into the lab and the man's world is disturbed.



  • All There in the Manual: The credits name the husband and wife as Douglas and Matilde.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: The film actually is shot in color, but the color scheme of all the sets is a series of drab browns and grays. This makes for a dramatic contrast when the camera finally pans up to show all the pigeons flying off into the blue sky.
  • Disturbed Doves: The man carries the seemingly dead pigeon out of the lab and into the courtyard outside, when he runs into the rest of the pigeons, which fly away in a group. The man looks down and then sees that his pigeon has disappeared, presumably flying away with the rest.
  • Due to the Dead: A pigeon zooms into the lab, crashes into the ceiling, and flops down to the ground apparently dead. The woman who is recording the results of the armpit-sniffing trial picks up the dead pigeon and is about to throw it into the trash can when the man jumps off his post, grabs the pigeon right out of her arms, and gently carries it out of the building.
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  • Fan Disservice: Sweaty, bald obese men wearing what look like glorified diapers, running on treadmills!
  • Flyaway Shot: A slow POV shot from the perspective of the man, with the woman looking up from the sidewalk as the man floats up into the sky.
  • Job Title: He sniffs armpits!
  • Rule of Symbolism: The symbolism of the metal boots, for the mundane everyday concerns that keep us tied down to our jobs and our mortgages and our bill paying, is obvious.
  • Silence Is Golden: No dialogue in the short.
  • Sleeping Single: The man and his wife sleep in separate beds.
  • Surreal Humor: A strange world in which people float away like balloons if they are not tethered. When the man floats to the ceiling in the opening scene, he has to throw stuff at a lamp until his wife wakes up and reels him in.