For the most part, I do want to thank you guys for taking the time to explain your qualms, in detail, about the film. It's important that we know what people have pause with here, because while I don't consider this my best film to date, I ranked it pretty highly before hearing these dissenting opinions. So it's good that that gets explained a bit more, because some of it really is beyond me understanding without explanation.
swintonmaximilian wrote:time periods are indistinct
This is what I have a hard time understanding. Yes, it flips back and forth in time a lot in terms of the narrative, so it can get confusing there.
But one setting is day. The other is night. The film clearly, very clearly, begins with fire on the ground and amnesia-struck characters, in the day. The night time stuff is then clearly at a different time period. The lighting is different, the blocking is different, but most clearly it's night time
The night/day differentiation has been obvious to other FXHomers I've spoken to on Facebook and to a lot of my filmmaking friends here, how is that not obvious? What I described the story as above is just a transcription of the film we made, not the script we wrote. Yes, it's convoluted and difficult to follow. But all the information needed it there.
I suppose I just can't see how, knowing that day and night are different lines separated by an explosion, it doesn't make sense for time periods. It seems pretty clear.... Admittedly, the script denoted that, in the day time, post-explosion, the filmmaking and acting is one of frustration and disorientation - and that's why things happen out of nowhere, that's why confrontations are made based on almost no evidence, why a gunfight ensues from just the chaos of being amnesia-stricken and generally not knowing what's going on
. So yes, you've hit the nail on the head there.
My wonder is why the night stuff isn't clear? It's pretty straightforward - enter a room, see a case, turn around, get shot in the back by a guy who, upon looking up, we flash quickly to see him accepting money for some reason or another.
I'm not trying to over-explain the story outside of how the film presents it, and I 'get' it not being narratively strong enough to support a succinct coherence. But........how does it not make sense after watching again? Hell, with Marathon and Redemption we didn't film enough footage, and fudged some emotions/plot devices in the end. Here, we stuck to all the info we needed and I think it makes enough sense with that in mind.
Starting at like 4:07, it's the present daytime, the suspicious timetraveler mentions "which one of us was pushed?" We then use cinematography to show the backstabbing timetraveler's eyes moving warily sideways, as if he knows it's him. Then we cut back to the past to actually confirm the suspicions that he did something wrong
. That's like.......clearly unraveling. Does that much go misunderstood? I'm not trying to argue, I just really want to know, is that not obvious?
Then, we cut back to the present, and the suspicious timetraveler is even more sure that the backstabber is bad, and he confronts him on it. This is cut between the present, where there's a confrontation even despite amnesia, and the past, where there's a parallel confrontation that they were going to be backstabbed. We thought the parallel there in Trevor's (the backstabber) humanity - not following through killing them in the past, and remembering, with regret in the present that he had tried to shoot them in the first place - and Reese's (the suspicious one) disgust - being disgusted by getting shot in the shoulder in the past, even more disgusted that his suspicions are probably correct in the present - was pretty paramount.
My brother even cut back and forth frequently, on music cues, to make this obvious. It's a 'still moment' for some small exposition, to give credence to either character. Maybe that didn't totally come through, but at least some of it should have. The character has amnesia and is suspicious, so we jump back as the audience and actually see his suspicions confirmed
. To me, that's a great 'moment' for our filmmaking. And it should
"We don't know what's what just yet..."
"We know EXACTLY WHAT'S WHAT!"
Yes, that dialog is meant to mirror what we want the audience to know. We now know
Trevor is, at least pre-explosion, the 'bad guy'.
Is it the parts following this that don't make sense? I can understand the final gunfight being unwarranted (the smaller bits of the script didn't come through at all there), but the argument preceding seems pretty clear. We even show Reese consult Jared, to say 'look at his eyes' to confirm to the other guy that he is sure it's him.
Them, bam, we're back in the past and the music is settled and an explosion still has to happen for them to be amnesiacs in the other plotline. So how is that going to happen? How do three people get amnesia in the daytime if now it's the night? We show that, with an accidental gun fight that ends in flames. Then, for the edification of the audience, there's shots of them while they're passed out at night, ending in a short catch-up of shots in the daytime to bring the storyline for the 'past' back to the storyline for the 'present'. Bam, they came full circle. Sort of.
Either way, thanks for taking the time to watch and comment on the film. It's interesting to see a different (albeit disparaging/critical) view of the film here, because it gives credence to our worries about it being convoluted when we made it. As for totally
nonsensical, no, I don't agree there at all......but whatever.
Last edited Sat, 3rd Jul 2010, 8:35pm; edited 2 times in total.