Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Apart: Movie Review


Darkness and confusion of teenage love and disaster.
“Apart” starts with the premise that two teenagers share the same psychological infliction: induced delusional disorder. Apparently, they are the only two people on the planet with this disorder. Based on that “fact” I assumed it was a made up disorder, and so I sat waiting for my way in to experience their reality. They never gave me any such connection. Afterwards, I discovered it was a real disorder, but one that only two fictional characters suffer from they tried to have me believe. 2011

Directed by: Aaron Rottinghaus

Screenplay by: Aaron Rottinghaus and Josh Danziger

Starring: Josh Danziger and Olesya Rulin

Although marketed as a psychological thriller, the romantic angle of teen love was really played up. And I was left wondering why they were trying to make that any more dramatic or mysterious when teenagers do a pretty good job of that themselves. But then again the entire movie is about wondering in confusion trying to figure things out.

Photos courtesy of Gravitas Ventures.
Something occurred. What? We don’t know. When? We don’t know. Why, or how? Obviously, we don’t know. Who? I assumed it was our two main tragic, teenage heroes, but the more I watched I got the impression that it was most likely disastrous events occurred to other random characters but which Noah and Emily observed.

The disorder that Noah and Emily have is one where they experience delusions, shared delusions, where they are seeing the exact same hallucinations. They can never be sure of their reality or their sanity. We can’t be sure either.

But the problem is, I couldn’t even follow what was going on. With lots of jumpy editing, we went from flashback to flashback to flashforward? Perhaps. I don’t know what time frame the present was. The two youngest actors could be identified as our main protagonists in their childhood years, but past that, I couldn’t always distinguish as to whether they were teenagers, older teenagers, young adults or slightly older young adults. For all I know, there could have been even more ages that we jump around to.

It was definitely dark, it could be thrilling if there was any narrative to hang on to, but “Apart” was mostly just confusing.


The Diary of Preston Plummer (2012) - Preston falls in love, Kate falls apart, and the Universe expands as it always does.

Moonrise Kingdom (2012) - Young, yellow love finding happiness in the world of Wes Anderson.

Martha Marcy May Marlene (2011) - Martha, Marcy May, and Marlene all caught between truth, sanity and madness.