Once upon a time there was a fair princess with a broken heart and a severe case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). 1, 2, 3… You Please is a classic fairy tale brought crashing into 21st Century, New York. Directed by and starring Josh Close, the 15 min short is charming, sad and brave enough to be funny in the face of a serious and debilitating illness. Striking this perfect balance is made possible by the incredible performances of the two leads, Close and Alex McKenna. The chemistry between them is so strong, it’s explosive – a good thing, considering they are married in real life…
“This film serves as part therapy, part message to those suffering that they are not alone, and part entertainment.”
Jesse is a young woman trying to lead a normal life, while suffering from severe OCD. Routine is how she keeps in control of her everyday life, but it all comes crashing down when she meets a charming barista in a coffee shop. The film’s focus is firmly set on Jesse. We never lose sight of her as we become witnesses to her most private moments, experiencing her anxieties alongside her.
Like the lead character, Close struggled with OCD throughout his early 20’s and felt a great deal of shame over it. “This film serves as part therapy, part message to those suffering that they are not alone, and part entertainment.” he explains. He wrote 1, 2, 3… You Please three years prior to shooting the film. When his wife, McKenna read it, she felt an instant connection with the script and the lead role, and thus a passionate, matrimonial collaboration was born.
When they’re together, the two actors create pure magic on screen. The scene in the restaurant, is a brilliant show of nervousness, excitement and awkwardness and McKenna and Close are entirely convincing in their roles as two people on a first date. The characters’ flaws and charm make them relatable and lovable in equal measures and as a viewer you desperately want them to find happiness.
Instead of golden locks, Jesse is rocking blue wavy hair and rather than spontaneously bursting into song, she’s more likely to spit or vomit, yet 1, 2, 3… You Please is a modern-day fairy tale with its heart in the right place. Like most fairy tales, it’s a story about love. The twist here is that the princess doesn’t get rescued by her brave prince, they save each other and it’s near impossible not to swell up with emotion and start cheering them on.