GALORE (2014)

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2-5 star | Dir: Rhys Graham

Consequences are of no concern to the temperamental teenagers in this authentically acted coming-of-age tragedy. Much like the 2003 Canberra bushfires that the film scantly builds itself around, best friends Billie (Ashleigh Cummings) and Laura (Lily Sullivanand) are unpredictable and uncontrollable as they laze through the Australian summer with bouts of impulsiveness, jealousy and narcissism. Stuck in their small suburban town of shriveling fun, this setting provokes hostile incense as infidelity between Billie and Laura’s boyfriend Danny (Toby Wallace) ignites a fire that scolds their friendship and potentially incinerates far more.

A lackadaisical and aimless nature to the film neatly represents the personalities of the characters and their suburb but doesn’t hide the sheer monotony of the narrative. A shortfall of originality, underdeveloped dynamics and an emo enamel to the otherwise ordinary teen angst halt any emotional legitimacy. A tighter plot with an actual direction would help the characters function in this world but the impressive performances are negated by a reliance on intermittent and unresolved plot devices where the grating melodrama contradicts the intimate cinematography. Undoubtedly visually alluring with some dazzling POV handheld sequences, the unlikeable and petulant characters render Galore obsolete with not much in the way of genuinely interesting drama, even if attached to more hospitable characters.

Edinburgh International Film Festival, 2014.

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Filed under Edinburgh Film Festival, 2014, Reviews

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