7.5/10
35
2 user

Alice Agonistes (2014)

Trailer
1:52 | Trailer
When a stranger enters Alice's house, she cannot imagine how his story could change her (and his) life forever. Memory, fear and horrific self-discovery take everyone by the throat.

Director:

Jennifer Hulum

Writers:

Jennifer Hulum (screenplay), MingLu Zeng (short story "Castaic 77")
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4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Liesel Kopp ... Alice
Rex Alan McMillan Rex Alan McMillan ... Ron
Chris Waters ... Jack
Lacy Hornick ... Kelly
KristiLynn Grace ... Young Alice (as KristiLynn Effie)
Tillman Norsworthy Tillman Norsworthy ... Young Ron
Mikey Effie ... Young Jack
Abby Chapman ... Young Kelly
Jocelyn Saenz ... Alice's Mom
Rod James ... Alice's Dad
Barry Schwam Barry Schwam ... Uncle Bob
Charles Wells Charles Wells ... Shawn
Stefania Marcone ... French Woman
Stephanie Lambertini Stephanie Lambertini ... Lisa
Ortrud Swanson Ortrud Swanson ... Coffee Lady
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Storyline

Alice Agonistes is the story of two strangers, Ron and Alice, who meet under unusual circumstance and share secrets from the past: Ron is a fugitive on the run from the law after murdering his longtime friend Jack and possibly his wife Kelly, a secret lover of Ron, with whom he had been infatuated since childhood. Traumatized as a child by her father's perpetual abuse of her mother, Alice nurses a desire to kill her own father. Fantasies of revenge haunt Alice after her mother's suicide. Two separate paths of life intersect and fall into a spiral of no return. And yet, things are never what they seem... Written by Peter Brier

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 January 2014 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Surround Idea See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Trivia

"Award of Merit: Short Film" from the Best Shorts Competition, 2013. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Alice Agonistes, a little film yet like an epic
9 January 2014 | by yoseph-huyoulunSee all my reviews

I am new to this IMDb. Since I saw this "little film" through a private online screening, I think it deserves my 2 cents:

The movie title is interesting. It got me thinking: I wonder if "Wonderland's Alice" gets in some kind of trouble like John Milton's Samson Agonistes. Well, let's see…

Alice Agonistes opens with a house-warming party and everything seems normal until the nightmare comes…

Ron is an unexpected visitor. He tells the story about his uncle, the Vietnam veteran who suffered from the war-trauma and turned to be a Christian for redemption. To me this backdrop story not only provides the depth of what this movie talks about --- death and peace, but also it's the way to establish Ron's character as a good story teller--- his story is rather convincing to Alice as well as to the audience.

The connection between Alice and the stranger Ron is the Cross, for which Alice inherited from the old man when he sold the house. And because of this Cross, Ron is allowed to stay over. In that night, Ron tells another story that reveals he is a fugitive on the run…

Interesting enough, the film is not about crime and investigation, or good defeats evil; it is about human's guilt complex that is possibly rooted when you were young.

Unlike usual small films, Alice Agonistes is a challenge and even a rebellion to the dogma. It uses multiple layers (flashbacks) to tell the story, which you don't normally see in short forms. But it fascinates me when the story unfolds like peeling an onion.

Perhaps I am an old-bone and still living in the era of Japanese cult movie "Rushomon" (1950) and French avant-garde Oscar short "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge (1962). For those cliché I have missed for decades and now I am glad I finally found them in this little film called "Alice Agonistes".

For technical aspects, I think the cinematography, lighting and editing are done well (except few moving shots that seem out of focus annoying me a little; but overall, it's good). I particularly love the montage at the end. Besides, I think the performers are stunning, specially the leads.

If I would be picky, I would say the quality of sound mixing is lower than my expectation. There are a couple of scenes having higher noise level than usual. But I understand the small project like this normally has a thrift budget and it can never compete with big screen films. So for this sake, I am willing to share my forgiveness.

My bottom line: I give it 9 out of 10 and highly recommend this film.

By the way, when you watch the film, pay little attention on the objects like the rope, the folder, etc.. I think you will know what I am talking about.


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