i dropped out of film school twice
such an exhilarating torrent of relentless fast cut edits; restless, angular camerawork; raw, chaotic mise-en-scène; riffing gloriously on every perversely glamourised gangster trope. it only fully hits you once the credits roll how disturbing it is, how helpless you, like them, were to the onslaught. no matter how mighty one might fall here, someone else will surely rise to take his place.
hertzfeldt's balance of tone is superb. he makes an impassioned cry for authentic human connection instead of the simulacrum we experience through our omnipresent screens. explores the nature of memory and articulates a response to ultimate futility. funny, moving, and grimly fatalistic.
a film shrouded in grief, longing, desire, memory, anger; so tender, and yet all of us strangers is unforgivably tasteless and cruel. the parental relationship is far more touching than that of the lovers; when the former brings home that poignant, emotional climax, the latter undercuts it with the predictable, gay-trauma-porn, final reveal. there are some incredible performances here, namely andrew scott, but the weepy score, manipulative beats and tropes, dull romantic chemistry, combined with a corny, eye-rolling ending, ruins what could have been a genuine, empathetic film. i'm sad because i really wanted to love it but the resolution left me feeling cold.