Saturday, September 27, 2014

Last Hijack(2014)

The one image you'll remember from this film
That's the life of a pirate, no plan just desire

Running as part of this years Convergence at New York Film Festival, the Last Hijack is getting two "screenings". One is of the interactive elements where the online audience can choose to go deeper into the story in a manner of speaking available on line  the film's website and the other is the film in it's theatrical form. (the film opens in theaters Friday).

Framed around the preparations for one last pirate run this film is a  look at the life of Somali pirates as told by the pirates, their families and the people that are affected by them.

An very good look the real life of the Somali pirates that varies differently then what we see in American movies or the news. Yes, these are not ultimately nice guys, since they make their living off the pain and suffering of others, but at the same time you come to understand why they did what they did, and why they kept doing it. You also kind of feel bad for them now that the party is over and the days of easy money is gone. (though some reports suggest that a new cycle of hijacking maybe coming as ship owners are becoming lax with security once more)

To be perfectly honest this is a film I admire more than I like. Don't get me wrong it's a very good film but at the same time it seems a bit too leisurely in the telling even at 83 minutes. My interest drifted occasionally, usually during some of the more reflective scenes (and I was told by several people that the white noise of the ocean that is heard through out the film put several writers to sleep). While I do like the use of the animation to illustrate the things that couldn't be shown, past events such as hijacks and war, I'm not too sure I really like the illustrations of our protagonist's psyche, more in that with this being a non-fiction film the psyche bits come off as pushing credibility a bit too much.

My reservations aside, this is definitely worth seeing, if not at the festival then down the road either theatrically or on one of the VOD platforms.

The interactive material runs tomorrow afternoon while the feature version runs tomorrow night. For details go here. If you can't make those the film opens in select theaters October 3, 2014 available exclusively on iTunes October 7, 2014 &VOD platforms October 14, 2014

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