Greg’s Guardian Angel (2012) – By Philip Smolen

As a small boy in Catholic school I was always told by the nuns to leave a little extra room on my desk chair, so my guardian angel could sit right next to me. After all, the angel was there to help me become a better person. That advice seemed ok at first, but after a couple of days, I started to resent my invisible spiritual partner because I wasn’t getting any advice from him, and I felt that he was taking up way too much room in my tiny chair.

Dan Kowalski’s short “Greg’s Guardian Angel” is a nifty variation of my childhood experience. It concerns a thirty something middle management type (Greg Vorob) who is visited by his own guardian angel (a goofy Elmer J. Santos). The spirit attempts to tell him what to do because as he says, “it’s all about the choices we make in life.” Greg is initially thrilled to be getting heavenly counsel and even happier when this advice gets him both noticed by his boss and a date with a hot co-worker. But the angel doesn’t know where to stop and before long, he begins to badger Greg over the minutest of life’s choices including what color ink to use on the crossword puzzle!

“Greg’s Guardian Angel” is smart and a lot of fun, and the film’s situations make it obvious that Kowalski has his tongue planted firmly in cheek. The script by Dan Conrad is bright and witty, and it’s amusing watching Vorob fumble about while talking to an angel that no one else can see. Vorob has a great rubbery face and is reminiscent of a young Jackie Gleason. He’s very expressive and has a natural gift for comedy.

This short reminded me a little bit of the old movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1948). But unlike like that classic, “Greg’s Guardian Angel” doesn’t take itself too seriously and instead serves up divine comedic situations with a devilish twist.

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