Incredible film-making, editing, acting and storytelling challenges audiences to actually witness the subliminal forces driving a modern-day tragedy. Non-Hollywood ending unforgettable and haunting.
Filmmaker and auteur Julie Talen weaves from the opening frames of Pretend together a mosaic. The mosaic is, on the surface, a simple modern day retelling of the age-old folk-tale of siblings straying into the forest against the interdiction of their parents. She begins right off the bat using split screen images of the young girls playing in their safe upstate New York yard., luring the audience in to their world which, by the fabric of the split screen itself, is perceived as both inner world and outer. The mosaic slowly intensifies and draws the audience deeper into the psychological and emotion complexities of the world she is creating as the film moves on. The screen continues to split into ever changing ratios and tempos and color palettes, demanding more and more profound commitment on the part of the watcher to follow the girls' story. The film itself takes on the properties of the forest they venture into and that metaphor continues throughout the film. At one point, as we follow the youngest sister's journey into lost-ness, the screen itself morphs into something un-nameable and beautiful and terrifying, and this lasts until something intangible happens in the watcher's experience which I can only describe as what Alice must have experienced in her descent into the rabbit hole.
The film challenges the audience and itself to question wherein does the fabric of our reality actually lie See this film.
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