North Atlantic (2010)
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Not being a fan of guitars there is a key scene in here that threatened to derail how involved I was in this story and it is testament to how well pitched the film is that it made it through this aspect for someone like me. Opening with a great shot of the plane in the middle of nowhere, the film plays it low-key from start to finish, never really playing up the drama or throwing in anything that would appear showy or out of place. The result is a surprisingly affecting film because of how matter-of-fact it is, which is a reflection of the characters in the piece. There is no show-reel material here from the actors and it feels more natural this way – it is basically about these two men, both knowing what is going to happen and both accepting it without a lot of fuss. There is a bond there and there is a certain sense of two people making a connection at the end and it is this that I liked.
Although the director does not throw in flamboyance or things to stand out (aside from the opening shot), the control on the tone and pace of the film is what impresses and he did a very good job to get everyone on the same page and deliver so consistently. The low-key nature of the short may reduce how big an impact it makes on audiences but to me it made it more engaging as a whole, with the simple post-script being a particularly nice touch. A simple, controlled and effective film that is worth a look.