Frownland

Frownland ★★★★

A deeply uncomfortable film to watch. Trying to say what you mean without the words coming out wrong (or at all in a lot of circumstances), conflict after conflict continually getting worse by your own unintentional doing. It's the feeling of being trapped by your own voice, having to restart your sentence constantly, just knowing whoever is respecting you less by the second. Just a truly fantastic performance, Mann inverting the usual caricature of dweebish loser into someone you can only feel an overwhelming amount of sympathy for.

It's a hard film to watch (for the most part, the 20 or so minute lull focused on Keith's roommate hinders the (up until that point) overbearing anxiety of the film), a truly claustrophobic experience, the sound design is overbearing at times, just a constant stream of noise blaring and attacking the viewer. It's a true shame that Bronstein never went on to make any more features of his own (though I am grateful he is putting his immense talent to use with the Safdie Brothers).

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