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Gale Morgan Harold III,
John Winthrop Philbrick
Rhinoceros Eyes is a fantastical coming-of-age story revolving around Chep, a young, reclusive prop-house employee who falls in love with a detail-obsessed movie production designer named Fran. Fran's need for authentic props sends Chep to great and questionable lengths as he tries to satisfy her requests, and ultimately... win her heart. Written by
From the first frame to the last I was completely caught up in the unique visual world created by first time director Aaron Woodley. The dark, cluttered prop house where the majority of the film takes place is a nostalgic and otherworldly cave of magic and threat. It is the home to childlike Chep, an employee who rarely leaves except to immerse himself in old films at the local cinema. When a production designer named Fran enters the prop house looking for a pair of genuine rhinoceros eyes, Chep is instantly smitten.
This film is rich in mood and atmosphere. It also has some great laughs and offbeat characters that are genuinely intriguing and not just annoyingly "quirky". The film is amazing to look at and there is even some creepy stop animation. But it is Chep who is the heart and soul of the film. Proving that he is more than just a pretty face, Michael Pitt delivers a heart breaking performance as the sweet and self conscious, reclusive who becomes increasingly desperate to please Fran and increasingly delusional about the nature of their relationship.
Being cool, funny, creepy and touching all at once can't be easy but Rhinoceros Eyes is all of those things and more - a cult classic for the future.
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