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Terry is a suicidal voyeur who doesn't seem to be able to kill himself. While preparing for jumping off a bridge, he meets Nick who ends up saving his life. Terry discovers that Nick is terminally ill and doesn't have much time left. Scared by the lack of time, Nick offers Terry a deal he can't refuse: Terry will become the beneficiary of Nick's life insurance or, since money doesn't matter to Terry, Nick promises to kill him before he dies. All Nick asks is Terry's help to realize a few fantasies before dying. Written by
Dream With The Fishes accomplishes what so many small independent films fail to do: it adheres to the reliable simplicity of storyline and character without getting bogged down in gimmickry or its own cleverness.
The casting and performances are perfect - it's a shame that David Arquette has disappeared into his wife's shadow - his performance as self-loathing/suicidal Terry is the perfect foil for Brad Hunt's desperate and free-spirited Nick. Both actors are brilliant in this film yet they've both remained relatively obscure in the years since it's release.
Perhaps Finn Taylor's direction has a lot to do with it. Aside from the performances he wrangles from his actors, Dream With The Fishes is also beautifully filmed, from the shots and camera angles to the lighting and even film stock he chooses for different moments to highlight shifts in character and story.
Add to this a haunting soundtrack (which I can thank for my introduction to Nick Drake) and you have a charming, heart-breaking, inspiring ride that serves both as an entertaining couple of hours viewing and a fine example for aspiring filmmakers.
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