The Time Peter Capaldi Made a Short Film About Franz Kafka


If you’re familiar with Peter Capaldi, it’s probably through one of the iconic roles he’s played: the brilliantly profane Malcolm Tucker in The Thick of It and In the Loop, perhaps, or his just-commenced run on Doctor Who. (Right about here is probably where I tip my hat in the direction of his work on Torchwood: Children of Earth.) I hadn’t been aware that Capaldi is also a filmmaker — an Oscar-winning one, in fact, for a 1993 short that he wrote and directed, Franz Kafka’s It’s a Wonderful Life.

As the title might indicate, this is a comedy: the setup, basically, is Kafka struggling to figure out exactly what Gregor Samsa becomes in The Metamorphosis. Throughout, he is interrupted by a series of interruptions in his apartment, from a strange costume delivery to an overly friendly knife salesman. And it also, as one might expect, hits certain holiday-movie beats. Also: there’s some singing. You can see the whole thing below.

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