A story that needs to be told - painfully real depictions; much is conveyed in 87 mins.
Marc Foster's "Everything Put Together" reminds me slightly of Henry Jaglom's 1994 "Babyfever". Both tell of women as friends and mothers to be, the joy and gaiety while looking forward to the arrival of a baby. But there's a drastic difference between the two: Foster's film went beyond the point of 'entertainment.' It's raising the consciousness to the tragedy and pains of parents losing their newborn to SIDS. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) - a cause unknown event that may not happen to one's life until the circumstance unexpectedly presents itself.
This film has a similar flavor to the Indie 2000 "George Washington" (w-d: David Gordon Green) - small film, down to earth people, casual feel camerawork with creative angles/effects applied. The subject matter is not your Hollywood safe theme but one that does need to be told and to prompt the awareness of the masses in like situations.
Besides the fact that Marc Foster directed the upcoming due for wide release "Monster's Ball," the name Radha Mitchell drew me to this film. I appreciate her exceptional performance as Syd opposite Ally Sheedy in Lisa Cholodenko's "High Art" 1998. I like the paired energy of Mitchell and Vin Diesel in the 2000 sci-fi "Pitch Black" even though the storyline was slim. It's heart-warming to see her support as one of the producers of this Indie film. Yes, not much publicity - I saw the film with only a handful few on the Friday of its one-week limited release in SF at the Landmark's.
Mitchell gave an impressive controlled performance as Angie, a new mother who so very suddenly lost her newborn. It was hauntingly forlorn seeing her at a lost and how the cheery circle of friends, of pregnant women and new mothers, disappears so quickly into nothingness. This is not "Amélie" fantasyland, this is personal emotions cruelly real. It's reaching out and touching no one. Justin Louis as husband Russ is barely the only support, hardly her emotional crutch. The ambient sound effects and the music by Thomas Koppel enhance the camerawork. The story is hard medicine - uneasy to swallow (that we could possibly be reacting just like Angie's friends and neighbors, having the same fears and callous behaviors; that hospital medical staff attitudes can be insensitive to patients' unfortunate situations...) - such incisive insights!
The length of the film is 1 hr. 27 mins. However, when the end seems inevitable, I felt I don't want it to end just yet - wanted to go on a bit more beyond the very Swiss screen approach we see I hope it did not result from under social pressures to please or conform would like to think that she and Russ did came through and that her grief over baby Gabriel has grown into selective pleasant memories and renewed outlook.
Definitely a worthwhile film to appreciate. Thank you to the people and efforts in the production of this film.
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