|Starring||Amy Seimetz, Shane Carruth, Andrew Sensenig, Thiago Martins|
|Release||5 APR (US) 30 AUG (UK) Certificate 12A|
Act II sees this film's twisted idea of a meet-cute, between Kris and Jeff (Carruth). A love story develops, but with sinister undertones: did they meet by accident? Why are they both so screwed up? What do they have in common? Maybe the film answers some of those questions, maybe it doesn't. But Seimetz's performance in particular is so natural that you feel like you could help her out if only you could untangle whatever the hell's going on.
The final act offers revelations and, to some extent, resolutions, but by this point you may need to have actually moved into Shane Carruth's brain to truly appreciate them. Themes of love, fate, choice and identity swirl frustratingly just out of reach, but if you stop trying to grab them and just let it all wash over you you'll find it a far more satisfying experience. And once the credits roll, you'll either be running for the hills in need of a heavy dose of normality or glued to your seat waiting for the next showing. Like Primer, Upstream Colour is a film that demands repeat viewings if you want to probe its mysteries to the core.
As director, writer, producer, actor, cinematographer, editor, composer, casting director, production designer and sound designer, Shane Carruth is indisputably an auteur, and although his latest has a hint of the Malicks about it (there's a strong whiff of The Tree Of Life here), he's a unique and exciting talent in American independent cinema right now. Upstream Colour may be a little too difficult to love, but it's too intriguing to ignore. You might find it unbearably pretentious, but you can't deny that it's unlike anything else out there, and for that it - and its author - should be celebrated.
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