If you live in LA and consider yourself a film buff, you have probably already heard of Jeff Goldsmith/Unlikely Films, Inc. and the fantastic screenings/Q&As he runs around town. While these screenings are a time investment – waiting in line, seeing the film, and then the sometimes too long Q&A afterwards – can clock in around 5 hours. So yeah. It’s a time commitment. But when it is for a film as visceral and thought provoking as Shane Carruth’s Upstream Color, it is worth the investment.
I can’t give a break down or synopsis of the film, because as Carruth pointed out on numerous occasions during the Q&A, to break down a film as consequential as this (my words, not his – he’s not a self-involved asshole, more of the exact opposite) upsets the effect it had in the first place.
I will tell you this. It is billed as a “romantic thriller sci-fi,” so yeah, figure that one out. It is not for the squeamish, faint of heart, or impatient. It touches on universal fears of loneliness and whether or not the reality we perceive is, well, real. It’s intense. It was one of those films, as happy as I was to hear Carruth talk about the film afterwards, that made me want to leave the theater in silence, drive home in silence, and just get into bed and turn the lights off.
If you are a fan of independent film, please make a point to PAY FOR and see this film. Carruth is self-distributing this film that he wrote, directed, starred in, and composed the score for. He’s a mad man, but I mean that in the most adoring way possible. I hope to be as wrapped up in my projects as he is sometime in the near future.
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See when Upstream Color is coming to a theater near you on the official website.