Today we’re returning to a dark comedy classic that, although released in 2017, rings just as true in 2024. Directed by Swedish animator Niki Lindroth von Bahr, “The Burden” is a wildly wry musical that skewers loneliness, greed, beauty myths, and the existential woes of modern life through a lively cast of animal characters.

The award-winning short film visits a bleak supermarket, hotel, call center, and fast-food restaurant where employees break into song and dance, sometimes to the tune of common sales refrains. “Would you like to sign up for our money-back guarantee? Try our satisfaction guarantee?” monkeys croon. When an apocalypse hits the bizarrely relatable world, the characters jump at the chance for change.

Watch “The Burden” above, and find Lindroth von Bahr’s other films on Vimeo.


an animated gif of three monkeys who work at a call center singing "say that you are sorry, do apologize, but never cancel the agreement"

a fish in a bathroom and another in sweats open their hotel room doors to the lobby where another fish stands behind the desk

a fish working at a hotel says

a dog moves his cart to stock the shelves at a grocery store

two mice dance with their cleaning supplies in a restaurant

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