Son Makes Touching Short Film Using Mom's Voicemails

| by Zara Zhi
Dawn Evans with her son, Charles FrankDawn Evans with her son, Charles Frank

A filmmaker from Brooklyn, New York, made a touching video about his relationship with his mother.

Charles Frank always felt detached from his family. “It’s interesting,” Charles told LittleThings. “The ‘disconnect’ was not because of any dramatic or horrible reason, it just started slowly happening after I left home when I was 18. I think I was so focused on developing my career and my own ‘home’ that other relationships fell by the wayside.”

He never thought his family recorded any home videos until his mother asked him to transfer some old footage to a hard drive.

There were about 20 hours of home videos, including memories of Frank learning how to “pump kick” on the swings, singing “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star," among others.

“I watched every clip, end to end,” Frank said. “I cried, I laughed, and then I wondered, what happened? Why aren’t we as connected as we used to be?”

So Frank turned to an unlikely source -- his voice mailbox. There were 38 unheard messages, many from his mom, he had never listened to, Upworthy reports.

Most of the voicemails from his mother, Dawn Evans, were mundane. Simple things, like asking what kind of shirt suits him:

Hi, Charles. It’s Mom. I want you to know I tried to buy you a shirt today, and I spent probably a good 40 minutes ... The thing is, I find a shirt and I like the color, but then it was too big or too wide or too bright or too whatever. And I never found the right shirt. Just wanted to let you know that, OK? Love you. Bye.

Or what he’d like her to cook:

Hello, dear one. This is your mother. I’m calling to see how today went and say hi. Nothing important. I was just thinking about you — I’m cooking, and I was thinking how much you would like this recipe. It’s butternut risotto. Bye.

Eventually, Evans realized her son was too busy for her:

Hi, it’s Mom calling, Charles. The fact that it went straight to voicemail tells me that you’re very busy, so I guess I won’t bother you. Say hi to Nico.

At first he thought the messages were funny, but later became struck with feelings of guilt and gratitude.

"As I dove deeper and deeper in my inbox, I felt more and more humbled," Frank told Upworthy.

He turned the 38 voicemails and 20 hours of home videos into a short film titled, “My Baby You’ll Be," available on Vimeo, according to Upworthy.

"Part of my hope is that an audience could watch this and reflect on their own relationship with their mother," Charles said, "hoping that the film serves as a reminder not to overlook the gift of unconditional love.”

And what does his mom think of the film?

"By the end of the film, it was a Kleenex moment for me," Dawn told Upworthy of the first time watching her son's film. "Tears won out."

Sources: Little Things, Upworthy / Photo credit: Dawn Evans via Upworthy

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