A Gay Man Dances Off His Heartache In This Wild And Whimsical Short Film

With "Sweater," writer, director and actor Nick Borenstein aimed to remind audiences that "dancing makes everything better."

A gay man’s romantic frustrations set the stage for a spectacular dance number in “Sweater” ― which is writer, director and actor Nick Borenstein’s new short film.

HuffPost got an exclusive sneak peek at “Sweater,” which is being released online Friday after an April premiere at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival. The film follows Corey (played by Borenstein), who trudges into a coffee shop after a first date falls flat.

After locking eyes with a handsome barista, Corey decides the afternoon may not be a complete waste after all. In what Borenstein likens to “a Beyoncé moment,” the character’s imagination takes over as he leads café patrons through a wild routine, set to the tune of Leo Justi and Brazzabelle’s “Swipe It Off.”

“I wanted to tell this funny, joyful story that also commented on the all-too-relatable themes of rejection and worth,” Borenstein, who is based in New York, told HuffPost. “I really do believe dancing makes everything better.”

"Sweater," written and directed by Nick Borenstein (center), premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival in April.
"Sweater," written and directed by Nick Borenstein (center), premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival in April.
Nick Borenstein

The result, he said, is a unique hybrid that melds “narrative film, musicals and music videos ― something I felt was missing from the broader landscape.”

Following its Tribeca premiere, “Sweater” was screened at festivals in Toronto, New York and Los Angeles, among other cities, where it was enthusiastically received. The film was shown alongside “99,” another short starring Borenstein that he also wrote and directed.

Collectively, “Sweater” and “99” represent an artistic milestone for the California-born filmmaker, who worked on the Elite Daily series “The Buddy System” and cites Donald Glover and Phoebe Waller-Bridge as influences. He’s currently at work on his debut feature, which he says will incorporate “thornier themes like grief and sadness” but in a humorous way.

And the upcoming film won’t be devoid of Borenstein’s signature whimsy, of course.

“Who knows? I may need to dance in the feature, too,” he quipped.

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