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|Index||19 reviews in total|
I watch tons of films of all sorts and time after time I am left feeling like 'I've seen this before'. That being the case, I had no idea what to expect from Cafe. To my surprise, this little indie flick turned out to be unlike anything I've ever seen. On the one hand, it is a slice of life--seeing the whole world in a Cafe setting with great entangled characters--strangers, friends and family. On the other hand, we are plunged into story about the game of life, questions about the ultimate nature of reality, free will and self-sacrifice. This film is both fun to watch and thought provoking to say the least. It demands audience participation and as the days go by since I saw it, I find it staying with me--which is more than i can say for 90+% of films out there. This is a film that will age well and I think a lot people will find it a refreshing and rewarding experience.
This is an Indie flick that I watched entirely because of its name. I
sit and write in cafes, and so I figured it would appeal to me. I
expected it to be quirky, and it was. What I didn't expect was for it
to be quite as quirky as it is. The tagline for the film is "What if
the world you lived in weren't real?" and that's basically what the
film is about. The cafe's regulars go about their everyday lives and
their petty dramas, every day, as do we all, but one day on the laptop
of one of the regulars there appears the face of a young girl telling
him that he doesn't really exist. He's just an avatar, living in a
virtual world that she has created, just for the fun of creating it.
Naturally, he doesn't quite believe this, but then events start
happening in the cafe that cause him *to* believe it.
As such, this is a little movie that might appeal to those who tend to believe the same thing about reality, and their own lives. If you believe that someone or something else is writing the script of your life, and that you are little more than a bit player in someone or something else's drama (or comedy), this movie's for you. It's not great, and not nearly in the same league of quirky cafe-based stories as "Amelie," but it's entertaining, in a lightweight, fluffy sort of way.
If you wind up seeing it, come back and say in the comments section what you think the guy who sits in the corner every day writing in his notebook was really writing. I think it was the script for this film.
If your willing to slow down the pace and go with this movie, your in for a sweet, thought provoking movie. If your an action movie goer, you may have a hard time staying engaged. Not a fault of the movie of course. The movie is based on the idea that everything in our so called reality is really an illusion. The thought provoking idea of what is real? Who created us and who pulls the strings? I once owned a café' called philosophers stone café' in which the same thought engaging ideas were tossed around with a cup of Joe everyday. Customers always said to me my café scene would make a great movie. Cafe' is close to that. Enjoy.
OK. Tomorrow, after I've slept, maybe I'll feel less than 10, but,
tonight? OK, yeah, a big, resounding 10/10.
It's hard to seriously fit you gently into a world. This time it works just beautifully. OK. I just stopped watching it, and I'm a little be-alcoholled. BUT I am one of those who is really nervous about showing films you really like to those you love, and THIS one I surely will.
I'm reminded of Kevin Smith, in terms of the reality of an intimate, special world, without the - weirdness?
OK. Bottom line. I don't know what to compare this to. Yeah, Kevin Smith, but gentler. What have I loved that'll give ANYONE a clue? Little Miss Sunshine - Steelyard Blues - Blues Brothers - Driving Miss Daisy - The Remains of the Day. And so many, many more.
Check my reviews. I don't often give a recommendation.
This is one. Go for it.
(And I have NO IDEA what the IMDb storyline is talking about. I suspect it's another film :/ )
A simple seeming story with a couple of otherworldly (computer reality) twists that gradually works on your sympathies and wins.
Except for a brief exterior giving the sense of place (West Philadelphia) and two or three other very minor exceptions, the entire movie is shot in a coffee shop. A surprisingly large cast of characters take on some significance. And the dreamy idealism of exactly those kinds of independent cafés permeates the movie. The ostensible driving force is the appearance now and then of a nasty guy who deals drugs and the reaction against him by others in the place and the police. But really the movie is more about character, and what makes character, and what makes some people good and whether that kind of goodness is real.
After awhile you also realize that one weird subplot--the appearance of a girl on a computer scree--is maybe the most important aspect of all. Because she helps redefine what reality is--not just the so-called reality of people's lives, but reality reality, ontologically. It's obviously too much to swallow, but just go with it, it's fun.
What holds it up most of all might just be the really solid acting from most of the main characters. And the sweetness the seems to permeate the movie through and through. It's low-budget but keeps it confident and well made anyway. It's a good excuse for hanging out with some nice people.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The mood, setting, the assortment of highly interesting characters, and especially the interaction between those characters, are all superb. I suspect that those few folks who are giving this movie a bad rating are doing so based on the little girl who seems to be playing "God", or the "programmer" in a virtual world supposedly created by her. However, the rest of the movie was just so fascinating that I simply would not allow this "existentialism" theme (if that's what it was) to ruin it for me. Hence, I just chalked that relatively minor portion of the film up to "fantasy." I might have given this an even higher rating, if not for the ending, which left one wondering what happened with the writer and the "movie girl", as everyone else in the cafe had a happy ending. *SPOILER* Now that I think of it, the sitting-alone writer (who was observing all the patrons and employees while writing his blog) also happened to be the mysterious owner of the cafe... so perhaps the "fantasy" elements were a product of *his* imagination (not the little girl's) while writing? That might explain why he was still observing and writing at the very end, seemingly despondent, while all those he was observing were experiencing oneness and elation. Just a theory I had the day after watching... ETA: In one of the above reviews, UncleTantra seems to share the same conclusion in his last paragraph.
The most brilliant movie I have seen. It made me sob with heartwarming realization. You just need to know what you are watching. It IS life and everything in it. Not just what you ware watching but listen to what they say. There are a ton of wonderful messages in this beautiful movie. It is a little slow in the beginning and like I said... you need to know what it is you are watching. It's tricky and quirky but great!! A much better "American Beauty". I am having trouble putting into words what I am trying to say... An important movie to be seen especially these days. Makes you want to go out and LIVE! Life is what You make it!
This movie is like the title...sweet. The setting and the characters add to this film. While this movie had the potential to be really good, it wasn't. It had a good message about life but it was confusing. I liked how all the characters seemed to connect but it didn't all flow together. The relationships going on in this movie were all interesting and did help make this movie bearable to watch, if it wasn't for the characters being interesting I wouldn't have watched the entire movie. I think if a few things were changed it might have made more sense. The movie was written well but just not in a way that makes sense. If you are bored on a Friday night watch this movie but if you want to watch a great movie I say you should watch something else.
I occasionally find these movies that most people won't have heard of
and will have no interest to see, yet shine as gems in their own right.
The criteria I use for determining when these small, indie films make
my list is that they take a risk and show a level of creativity that
mainstream films have abandoned. Recently I have found an interesting
class of these films that I call the indie film with the unexpected
sci-fi twist. Café is one of these.
I didn't read the reviews or know the tagline to be forewarned what this movie is about. I have to say, not only was I intrigued, but extremely pleasantly surprised. I am not going to rehash the details of the plot but suffice it to say, if you are a movie lover sitting at home looking for a pleasant way to stretch your imagination and spawn a post viewing discussion, this one is for you.
Recently I found two others I considered similar in this class of film. "Safety not Guaranteed" and "The Sound of My Voice" were two other films that fell into this personal class of interesting film. Take the plunge and try these original films!
Unlike most other Jennifer Love Hewitt movies, especially with the
presence at the time of her former boyfriend Jamie Kennedy who plays
against type, this movie isn't a fun loving light romantic comedy.
Instead, what the audience is offered up is a rather strange but
fascinating dramatic fantasy about relationships and infinite
possibilities using an ensemble cast and short story plots, some
connected and others not. All these characters their interspersed
stories are also presented in an almost theatrical manner using the
same diner set as the singular location throughout the entire movie
(like a play) over a period of days starting with an shooting incident
and then the movie told in flashback.
Cafe directed and written by Mark Erlbaum comes across somewhat like a movie based on a screenplay by the Oscar-winning Charlie Kaufman screenwriter Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), Being John Malkovich (1999). Less weird and strange than the even more surrealistic The Devil's Carnival (2012), but more unusual than the traditional ensemble movie with various relational plots like Love Actually (2003) or the more serious dramatic presentation like Traffic (2001) or the more dramatic thriller Bobby (2006) or the dramatic television presentation of Separate Tables (1983).
Cafe might best be compared to another fantastical series of life stories as revealed in the Japanese fantasy movie After Life (1998) or the more polished and foreign but mainstream light comedy Chocolat (2001) or the rather distinctive mystery drama of Dogville (2004) with its creative theatrical set design. While the ending of the movie might be consider too sanguine and too cute, Cafe does presents a surprisingly ambiance and charm with its off-beat and creative approach to cinema.
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