NASTY BABY (2015)

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Written & Directed By: Sebastian Silva
Cinematography By: Sergio Armstrong
Editor: Sophia Subercaseaux 


Cast: Sebastian Silva, Kristin Wiig, Tunde Adebimpe, Reg E. Cathey, Mark Margolis, Alia Shawkat, Anthony Chilsom, Neal Huff, Marsha Stephanie Blake, Judy Marte 


A close-knit trio navigates the idea of creating life, while at the same time being confronted with a brutal scenario that causes them to take a life.

I Can’t really tell how one is supposed to feel about this film. It is well directed and well made. It’s a film that is open To interpretation especially the ending.

How it comes off is that as this not based in a true story. Maybe it is an urban legend or maybe a meditation of a situation that happens for writer-director Sebastian Silvia where he takes it more to an extreme.

As he stars in the film, writes and directs the film and is an artistic filmmaker who lives in gentrified Brooklyn.

The film comes off as off best as it begins like an ideal liberal comedy drama. That begins to have dark overtones. As the film leaves little clues and foreshadowing for later events. The main characters anger problems. This mentally disturbed neighborhood fixture. His ongoing art project.

In between we get glimpses into each characters lives to reveal they might not be ideal but pretty close to it. We also get to know the characters, their personalities and individual personal dramas. Not compelling but also not meant to be.

Though if reading the film on another level the mentally disturbed man. Might be a Specktor from the old neighborhood and as the gentrification of the neighborhood. He is slowly being pushed out. As the neighborhood can’t stand his kind anymore and it more or less eats st them and makes them realize their own prejudices and class. Now this could have been more effective if the character was more coherent. By making him mentally disturbed there is some sympathy but also a reason why he might not be missed or can’t be dealt with in a rationale manner.

The ending also gives the characters an out. Instead of calling the cops and just being haunted by the character and the events after his death. Now they are haunted in a accidental murder conspiracy. As if they call the cops the main character will be deported. Ruining his life and that is more important then this man’s.

If the film raised these questions or st least presented them more clearly and made the characters contemplate this. This could have been a more powerful film. As it is presented it seems more like a hipster film that puts them in the middle of a crime but let’s them get away with it. Showing no sympathy for the characters already glib seeming lives.

The ending implies will they ever be comfortable as it seems like a detective or someone is questioning his disappearance. The film would be more enjoyable if the depth of the characters were easy to identify. How it comes off it seems though artistic. They are spoiled more than anything.

The films ever evolving tone is fun. From light comedy to scenes of drama. To art world satire the. All of a sudden To thriller. Keep you on your toes but can also be confusing. Especially when a lot of scenes are roe about character development and don’t move things along too much or if they do just seem repetitive.

The films seems like an attempt to subvert. Though like the characters it comes of as self indulgent more than anything. There are elements of a good film and story, but feel like they don’t come together in the right way.

Though it seems to want to be inspired. It just seems a little too loose. Then again my reading of the film might be skewed. As maybe he meant for this uneasiness and for the character to be more complex rather than simple.

It just seems like a film where the filmmaker wanted to when the character do a justifiable homicide and more of a viper than fantasy that he may or may not be ashamed of and leaves the ultimate fate int eh hands of the audience to decide. While showing the eclectic beauty of brooklyn and it’s residents. Especially with a roller rink highlight credit sequence.

Grade: C

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