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On Christmas Eve, a regretful husband admits to his high-spirited wife that he has hired a contract killer to take her out. She immediately flees. A nice couple offers her shelter, but everyone have dark secrets in this wacky movie.
Interconnected stories examine situations involving the five senses. Touch is represented by a massage therapist who is treating a woman, while her daughter accidentally loses the woman's pre-school daughter in the park. The older daughter meets a voyeur (vision), a professional house-cleaner has an acute sense of smell, a cake maker has lost her sense of taste, and an older man is losing his hearing. Written by
John Sacksteder <email@example.com>
Chosen as the film to start the Perspective Canada series for the 1999 Toronto Film Festival, "The Five Senses" explores numerous lives in turmoil that are also intertwined in many ways.
Shot in Toronto, the story revolves around the disappearance of a little girl and how it affects the lives of those who knew her and those who feel responsible. More predominantly though, I believe it is about the bonds that are forged from one person to another in a variety of relationships and the strains that can test them. From friends old and new, parent to child, employer to employee, client to vendor, lovers past and present. All of these associations undergo a transformation of some kind in this film.
The film is beautifully shot with interesting set-ups but is not edited evenly throughout the feature. Scenes with Molly Parker and Mary Louise Parker are tightly edited and executed nicely, while some other scenes just seem to be drawn out a bit too much, the pace is a slow one, with numerous subplots that attempt to liven the drama.
But for art's sake and support of Canadian filmmaking, I would prefer not to draw negative attention to this film. There are some very moving scenes and excellent performances, but at the same time, I'm not sure I can recommend this one to just anyone.
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