For Reel

Dust (2009)
March 29, 2011, 3:43 am
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Max Jacoby

With Dust, first time feature filmmaker Max Jacoby directs a surprisingly low-key apocalypse drama. Whereas many films use apocalyptic landscapes to achieve suspense – the searches for food and water, the avoidance of road warrior baddies – Jacoby seems to set his material in such a setting for the sole purpose its aesthetic value. The film concerns a pair of twins, Elodie and Elias, who live together following an unexplained catastrophe that wiped out the human race. Soon, they are joined by an injured stranger, Gabriel, and Elias’ jealousy begins to grow as Elodie takes sexual interest in the brooding vagabond. Most remarkable about the film is Fredrik Bäckar’s widescreen cinematography. Each frame is composed masterfully with an effective use of natural light. Accompanied by the hushed dialogue and Jacoby’s leisurely pace, the film sustains a compelling mood that stays with you long after exiting the theater. Although the performances may be too mannered and the plot too small to retain much narrative interest – Gabriel, in particular, remains frustratingly enigmatic throughout – the film’s aesthetic achievements are significant. Hopefully the film will see a small commercial release as its visuals alone are meant to be experienced in a theater.

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