Stars: Jonathan J Joyce, Tammy Drewett, Anthony Harrell, Scot Haskins and Spencer Haskins
|This film was an official selection at the Jerome Indie Music & Film Festival in Jerome, AZ in 2013. Here's an index to my reviews of 2013 films.|
And I'm not sure I've quite got there yet, but there are a few facts to base our interpretations on. What we see is a man running around at night and, for the most part, we see things from his perspective. He tries to avoid all the normal people, who stand still in some sort of somnambulist state doing precisely nothing. He especially tries to avoid the strange folk in white masks who keep popping up wherever he least expects, folk who are certainly not oblivious to his presence in their midst. He finds a hiding place, but is eventually caught, only to escape again and again. We have no idea who this man is, where he is or why he's there. We have no idea who any of the other people are either, as there isn't a framework for us to build on. There's also no resolution, which is why I can theorise without any fear of providing spoilers; this is emphatically a film to watch half a dozen times with thoughtful company to see if you can understand what it's trying to tell us. Maybe it isn't telling us anything.
Another plus is the style that director Anthony R Pisano and his crew conjure up. The concept of using masks may be a story element, but it's a visual one too. The first man in a mask we see is entering a room from the dark outside, which makes him look like a disembodied head for a moment. Positioning actors in patterns is a little freaky too, especially with the masks potentially doing the choreography. It reaches into our minds and triggers a surprising amount of reactions for something so short and vague. I also enjoyed the sound design, which sets up what could easily be listened to as dark ambient music. It's a combination of weird whispering, high pitched drones and a well timed tolling bell. The heartbeat that bookends the piece feels appropriate, as is the minimal theme by Jason McNeil that accompanies the end credits. I'm not going to pretend that I've figured this out yet but it did make me think and it's still doing that. I can even forgive the handheld footage. That must say something.
Alone can be viewed for free on YouTube.