Reviewed byDextronixVote: 7/10/10
What a totally enjoyable 'under the radar' film.
Tragic events well acted by the young cast, and a very believablescenario.
An unlucky accident just spirals and moves at exactly the right pace.Never too sensational. Never too gory. And you can't help but feelmoved by the inevitability of the story.
Sharp. Succinct. Well acted. Well made. Great script. LOVED IT!
Reviewed byJvH48Vote: 7/10/10
Saw this at the Rotterdam film festival 2017 (website: iffr.com). Thesynopsis on the festival website contained ample pointers to avoid thismovie, for example "life revolves around vying for popularity, hangingout, falling in love and looking for kicks". Luckily there was onlylittle attention for partying, courting, clothes, and more such, unlikeother movies covering youngsters of high-school age. The real dramatook some time to develop, but once becoming apparent it stayed in theforefront, and so should it be.
A bit problematic (for me) is that the finale went a bit too fast andtoo bloody for my taste, something that did not follow logically fromwhat happened before. It seemed a bit over the top. On the other hand,a different ending was not easy to think of, as involving the policeand the legal system would have ruined the story completely. Moreover,it would require bringing in the parents of our main protagonists,which usually does not bode well for the clarity of the drama. Anyway,unexpected turns of events came at a steady pace and without weakmoments, one step after another. The role of the female collegestudents was less cultivated, as if they were only background tapestry,or maybe serving as catalyst material to speed up developments butotherwise not really crucial for the outcome.
Unclear is the opening scene where a deer is found dead in the classroom with a broken window. It took some time before the police entered,who started exchanging glances with each other, but I'm at a loss whatit all meant.
From the final Q&A I learned a nice statement: "planting little seedshere and there is the essence of script writing". And also: Rhythm andpacing are important (it was a side answer to a question about thesound track, but even more applying to the screenplay).
Also from the Q&A: A serious attempt was made to give Josh moredimensions in his character. Same for the others, though they did notneed it that much. All were nice young men without really bad habits,but only nice is not enough to keep our interest.
All in all, I was glad to have booked tickets for this movie, despitemy fears that it was to become another coming-of-age story with toomuch time devoted on courting and partying. This time there were noproblems along that line. It sustained a real focus on the centralstory and its pacing of subsequent developments. The audience awardedthis movie a mediocre 73rd place (out of 172) with an average score of3.905 *out of 5).
Reviewed byBawoofVote: /10
Then Super Dark Times might have been it. Overall I enjoyed this filmand I do recommend it. The performances of the young actors are welldone;I especially enjoyed the performance of Amy Hargreaves (theattractive mother) who plays the mom as someone who is unaware of theexact situation her son has gotten himself into, but she is NOT yourstereotypical naive and clueless parent that is so often portrayed insuch films.
That said, the film is not without its faults. The opening scene whichthe director NEVER returns to makes absolutely NO SENSE in the contextof this movie. Additionally, having been a high school geek myself(although that was back in the late 70s and early 80s), I find it oddthat the cute girl (played by Elizabeth Cappuccino) would even have theslightest romantic interest in the nice guy geek Zach played by OwenCampbell; sorry but those of us who fall into the "late bloomer"category know that growing up, the most we could hope for from the cutegirls was to end up in the friend zone and foolishly hope that one dayshe would wake up and realize that the nice guy is the guy for her(BALONEY!) That subplot reeked of a writer's fantasy to me.
One particular standout was Sawyer Barth as the eighth grade boy fromanother school who accidentally gets caught up in the violence. I mustsay, this young fellow gave a very underrated by convincing performancein a supporting role.
Finally, a few points about how the ending unfolds as it does left mesomewhat confused. I could not understand why one particular characterbehaved a certain way, nor did I understand why someone else did NOT dosomething that should have been fairly obvious. That's all I want tosay since I don't want to spoil it for anyone. I give it arecommendation if you like dark coming of age stories.
Teenagers Zach and Josh have been best friends their whole lives, but when a gruesome accident leads to a cover-up, the secret drives a wedge between them and propels them down a rabbit hole of escalating paranoia and violence.