Another Earth (2011)

MIKE CAHILL

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   B

USA, 2011.  Artists Public Domain.  Screenplay by Mike Cahill, .  Cinematography by Mike Cahill.  Produced by Mike Cahill, , Brit Marling, .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by Mike Cahill.   

Other than a nifty plot and its featuring Tom Cruise’s cousin as a cast member, it staggers the mind that a film so terrible could get distribution. Shot on zero budget with zero skills, it stars writer-producer  being released from prison after causing a car accident that took the life of a woman and her baby. Back out in the world, she finds herself looking for the sole survivor of the crash, the man of the family () whose career as a successful writer has only gotten more impressive since his tragedy.

Here’s the twist, though: what has happened to the world, and what caused Marling to look into the sky and not watch where she was driving in the first place, was the scientific phenomenon of another planet discovered in our solar system near us, identical to ours and offering the possibility of new beginnings to the human race. Naturally, someone like our heroine would love the chance to start again.

It’s a wonderful conceit, but the way it plays out is hardly Solaris (it’s not even Melancholia). Instead you have to endure bad directing and editing and shoddy camera work that wants to get away with its low-grade nature as some kind of raggedy or rebellious effort, but is just plain amateur.

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