Sunday, June 28, 2015

In short: Spring (2014)

Following the cancer death of his mother and a handful of fuck-ups, Evan (Lou Taylor Pucci) flees from his native US into a random direction – Italy, as it happens. There, he drifts to a town in Apulia, finds (illegal) work with a farmer, and meets and falls in love with Louise (Nadia Hilker). Louise reciprocates his feelings but she has secrets of the dark, ancient and strange kind that can become quite the problem in a relationship.

For the second time, I find myself very much excited about/by a film directed by the duo of Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead yet also very unwilling to actually write too much about the brilliant film I’m so excited about. It’s not so much the fear of spoiling plot points for my – possibly fictional anyway – readership, for this isn’t a film going for the big twist, in fact one putting its cards quite clearly on the table, but of spoiling that perfect moment of coming into a film like this without too much baggage, and me not wanting to get in the way of anyone just watching the film and letting it unfold.

So, I’m just going to say I think Spring is as perfect a movie as I’ve encountered, a romance with fantasy and horror elements (that one of the main characters would most certainly rather call science fiction, and oh how I love the film for which of the two it is) with wonderful acting by Pucci, Hilker and Francesco Carnelutti, directed in a style that starts out as your typical indie realism yet becomes increasingly poetic in simple yet decidedly poetic ways.

Thematically, Spring concerns itself very much with those things you’d expect of a film with a title like this that sends a young man to Italy - love and decay, death and rebirth, loss and finiteness and love again, treating its themes with clarity, humanity, a feeling of sadness and a feeling of joy, as it should be.

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