Sunday, August 06, 2006

Me and You and Everyone We Know

Written and directed by Miranda July, Me You and Everyone We Know is an indie film that has gone on to win several film awards around the world. It finally opens in the theatres here, but it's difficult to see what the fuss is all about.

Miranda plays one of the two major leads, Christine, in a community tale with an ensemble cast of minor characters. Her role as a contemporary artist looking for her break and earning a livelihood driving an "Eldercab", spews too many philosophical lines and basks herself in many contrived situations, and gets herself involved romantically in an unconventional manner with Richard (John Hawkes), a shoe salesperson recently separated from his wife and tried his hand (pardon the pun) at self-immolation.

The Everyone We Know here refers to the ensemble cast in the movie, ranging from Richard's younger son dabbling innocently in internet romance / online sex, the elder son who got lucky when 2 arguing teenagers wanted to know who gives the better blow job, a little girl preparing her dowry in 20 years time when she marries, her mother whom she seldom sees, to Richard's colleague at work who teases with the 2 teenagers, and the list goes on. Basically it refers to the neighbours they live with, and the very limited degrees which separate them.

In my opinion, it's actually quite an ordinary movie about the ordinary lives of ordinary people, but perhaps therein lies its charm. It's not the usual romance filled storyline between Christine and Richard, nor are the relationships between any of the characters the usual cliches that you'd come to expect. Not that it's dry, but it's quite different.

However the movie does have its moments, and somehow I enjoyed the stalker like instances when Christine courts Richard, the dowry made up of everyday household items stored in the chest of Hope, and of course the more risque bits, especially the one where the identity of the online sex chat partner is finally revealed, and you'd get to see the reactions of both parties when they meet up. Pure unadulterated magical moment, if I could say so.

And the gag which really cracked me up, was an innocent quip about this "back and forth" smiley:
You got to watch the movie and find out for yourself what it means.

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