Friday, May 6, 2011

Distance (2001)

Three years after an apocalyptic cult released a biological weapon that killed hundreds and wounded thousands four relatives of people killed in the attack attempt to come to terms with what happened. While the nation mourns the deaths of the victims these four try to come to terms with the deaths of some of the cult members. When their car is stolen they are stranded in the woods where the cult had lived and where their relatives ashes were scattered. With no where to go they are forced to spend the night with one of the few survivors of the cult. There is much talk and reflection as the quartet attempt to find out what drove their loved ones to take part in such a terrible act.

This is a film that will enthrall some and drive others to pull their hair out as conversations seem to trail off and people seem to speak haltingly. We catch glimpses of the past in flashback as each person reflects on when their loved ones were still alive and we see the events filtered with the knowledge of what came after. Things are not always spelled out and its not always clear who is who or what is going on. (it takes a while before you realize that the people are relatives of the cult members)

It's a film you have to work with. Personally I'm not sure what I make of this film. I like the realness of it, but there are times when I feel as though it's more than a bit contrived, never to the point of being bad, but just so its slightly disappointing (that something that gets so much right can be so lumpy at times).

Still it makes you feel and makes you think about things more than most films these days. The best ting I can say is that it's been years since I first saw this and I find that I haven't not thought about it at least once a week since I first saw it.

Worth seeing, especially if you're interested in seeing a film that deals with subjects that are pressing in today's world.

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