December 02, 2014

Before I Disappear (2014)

Before I Disappear (2014) - Movie Review
Directed by: Shawn Christensen
Country: USA / UK

Movie Review: “Before I Disappear” is a very personal project by Shawn Christensen who wrote, directed, produced and starred in this drama based on his 2012’s Oscar-winning short film “Curfew”. Immersed in a complicated life, Richard (Christensen) is a depressive, indebted and lonely guy, who passes most of the time getting his concerns out of his chest by writing letters to a long-gone friend named Vista. His disturbances make him cut his wrists in the bathtub (so typical scene), action interrupted by a phone call from his estranged sister (Emmy Rossum), asking him to take care of her 11-year-old daughter, Sophie (Fatima Ptacek). Uncle and niece create an unlikely bond while wandering through New York City, in a messy adventure that tries to touch a lot of genres (from drama to mystery/thriller; from comedy to staged musical) in distinct moments, without being exactly well succeeded in any of them. The vision of a dead girl lying on the floor of a nightclub’s bathroom due to an overdose haunts him throughout his painful days, fact aggravated when he finds that she was his boss’s girlfriend. This subplot also didn’t create the desired impact, and despite well shot, “Before I Disappear” sinks itself in a sort of indie lethargy that lacks the vigor and confidence present in the short that served it as inspiration. Right before the credits roll, at the sound of Billie Holiday’s ‘I’ll be seeing you’, I was sure of my cruel indifference towards Richard’s life and his family.

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