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  • Warning: Spoilers
    I've always liked both main actors although I didn't know their names. I now have a new respect for them since they not only gave heartbreaking performances but also wrote the film.

    I had a brother who died horribly in much the same way. I'll give them an A for effort but no film could ever really show the physical ravages of cancer and the true horror and emotionally devastating reality of a lingering death.

    There is nothing more soul crushingly sad than seeing your mother stroking her comatose sons hair, whispering in his ear to let go. That was my hell to witness.

    Saying that, I was brought to tears and blown away by the idea of a victim of this insidious disease, whichever variety it is, existing on another plain of thought, working it out in some spiritual dreamlike paranoid but ultimately beneficial delusion.

    It has made me see my brothers death in a new light. I hope he had a chance to work it out in his own mind before his life ultimately ended. It's been 15 years since my brothers death and not a day goes by that he is not in my thoughts. I miss him. I'm not religious at all and sometimes I envy those people who can believe. I see how it could soften the blow in situations like this. I could be wrong but when it's over maybe I'll see him again and he'll be there to help me down that road, wherever it leads.

    This film was a beautiful and deeply moving cinematic experience that has brought a lot of emotions to the surface, one which I could have done without seeing but glad I didn't.
  • pmdawn3 March 2013
    9/10
    Stay.
    Just as a sign of how much this film moved me, this is my first review on IMDb after 3 years of not having much to add or say about countless other movies.

    As other reviewers have written, it's tough to talk about "Leave" without spoiling it.

    The best I can do is recommend you read the synopsis, perhaps watch the trailer and make up your own mind. Don't fall for the abysmal ratings on IMDb. You can leave and dismiss it as I almost did or stay and be surprised. Do what you want.

    You have a choice. One minute into the film and I wasn't sure if this was for me. I chose to let go and enjoy the trip. Turns out this was just what I needed.

    I'd describe it as a slow paced psychological thriller. It's a short movie and it's perfect as it is.

    I can say I've watched this twice in a row and I'm still thinking about it. I cannot recommend this enough.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Like another reviewer, I joined just to comment on this movie and also, to undo their remarks and score. I also felt that it wouldn't be fair to submit my take without adding that it might share a bit too much, (ok I wrote a spoiler) also who would want to be blacklisted right out of the gate. I rented this movie without reading the premise; I was in hurry and the 4 and a half star rating got me. Never do anything in a hurry. It has been over a half hour since the credits and at this point, I feel in a better position to evaluate the story.

    My first reaction is do I suggest or warn my two siblings and/or forbid my Mother from accidentally viewing this film. I decided yes to the former and yes to the latter. After eight years without spending Christmas with our Sister, for some reason this year got to me more then the past, so a movie like this really took me off guard. Our entire family went through a scene all too similar to this stories ending. I knew something was about to take a turn, just didn't think it would go down like it did, with the bed and IV drip. The writer had to have lost someone to this disease, because it does not seem possible to be this keen without first hand experience.

    We lost her 8 years ago around the Holidays and I'm finding out that some years affect you more then others and although a film like this can stir thing up, I'm grateful, by chance, to have seen it. I wrote this review and embellished so others can get a real life perspective and hope others share as well. It is better to release emotions then to hold them in and then explode on the innocent.

    Everyone involved in this Production was superb! My favorite was Frank John Hughes (Chris) where has this under rated actor been and why doesn't he garner more attention. Dude you were Great, simply Great! The entire movie was an unexpected surprise; especially that it received so little attention. I wish I could do a memory dump and watch it anew, even with the tears. I have just become a Gomez and Hughes fan for their pen and a fan of the four principal actors as well. This Movie was F**kin Great.
  • With a 5.1 I was not expecting too much. You imagine how shocked I was to see I movie I would give a nine rating. The more I thought about it the more I realized it was the dark nature of the subject matter. Many people don't like movies about real life, choosing escape instead. Or they prefer an assault on the senses. I know my wife would hate the movie, but then she watches "dance moms". No it doesn't have a lot of action or thrills but it caught me totally off guard and left me with some dark thoughts. I won't even begin to describe the movie. I couldn't without giving it away. You know what kind of person you are, and don't pay any attention to the rating number. I think it's a gem.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    ***This review may contain spoilers***

    The direction and performances in Leave are terrific, even though the underlying premise of the film isn't particularly original. More seasoned viewers may recognize elements from such films as An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge or Jacob's Ladder, where the entire narrative is essentially a waking dream/nightmare or hallucination in the mind of a character who is dying or about to die.

    But the issue here isn't one of originality. "We tell ourselves stories in order to live," Joan Didion famously said. But we can also tell ourselves stories in order to learn how to die. It may be a story we've heard before, but that doesn't necessarily make it any less powerful.

    So while I suspected Leave was moving in a (to me) somewhat familiar direction, I found the cumulative effect of the film overwhelming. As both a medical professional and as a private person, I have had to deal with the reality of losing patients and loved ones. But each passing is its own unique journey. Even through great suffering, some do not want to let go---they cling fiercely to what's left of their lives. Who can blame them? But there comes a time when all of us must say goodbye, yet when and how we finally choose to say it is a process as complex as it is unpredictable. Leave asks us to bear witness to one man's coming to terms with this inevitability.

    I suppose there are people who are made angry or afraid by films that touch them at this primal, emotionally raw level, but essentially they're cutting themselves off from some of the greatest dramas ever written. They should probably stick with safe, unchallenging fare--loud, empty toys like the latest Transformers iteration or paint-by-numbers rom-com. Some can live on a diet of popcorn and little else.

    Meanwhile, some of us will continue seeking out films such as Leave, which aren't afraid to ask the (literally) ultimate questions that all of us as human beings will eventually have to face.
  • This is the kind of exploration that Ingmar Bergman and Terrence Malick (at his best) used to create.

    It is a work of art, an absolute gem.

    Every element of this film works seamlessly...to generate a flood of feelings and memories in the viewer.

    Please be prepared: this beautiful movie may reach you on some deep levels. The way that ALL great art usually does.
  • I am 61 years old, rented this movie, hoping it wasn't a "yawner." Well, I was not disappointed. I loved every minute of it. But don't leave the room to get some popcorn or coke without putting it on "pause." You will miss something important. The acting was great and the plot kept me guessing throughout the entire movie. I went from happy to sad to happy to sad to scared for the main character to happy for the main character. I want my sister to watch this movie and my daughter and my sons and my grandchildren. So few movies have such substance. I loved some of the lines from the movie but won't do any spoilers here. Just watch it!
  • This film reached into my soul, shook it around, squeezed the breath out of it then left it stunned and soothed at the same time. I'll give no spoilers or even a synopsis, I recommend you watch it with as little expectation as possible (as I did). I just watched it and had to write my first review because of it, I couldn't even turn off the credits and now I'm staring at a blank screen with a feeling in my heart I've rarely experienced. Fantastic job to all involved .
  • The pieces are all there, and every viewer can construct their own paradigm of family memories, joys, sorrows...this is a very personal movie, and a work of art.

    It's the sort of powerful exploration that Ingmar Bergman and (at his best) Terrence Malick used to make.

    The reviewer before me was correct...I cannot fully discuss this movie without spoiling it. You simple have to see it.

    I can say this: please be prepared for a flood of memories and feelings, which this film will awaken in you.
  • Let me first say that I believe Frank John Hughes and Rick Gomez to be two of the truly underrated actors in Hollywood, to say nothing of the fact that they were also responsible for producing and writing this masterpiece. I'd watch anything the two of them put out. Frank John Hughes could have held his own in this film with his eyes alone. He is brilliant. Rick Gomez plays his role to perfection, using his signature blend of sarcasm & dry humor, mixed with an incredibly heart-wrenching display of raw emotion. His versatility makes him one of the best kept secrets in Hollywood. LEAVE is a film that I can watch over and over again, regardless of the fact that I already know the ending.
  • From the very first sound in the film you are involved in unraveling a unique puzzle. There were so many questions racing through my mind as the film progressed that I was left debating the details internally over and over. The cast is obviously talented and you know them from lots of other project you love...Do yourself and everyone you love a favor and take them to see LEAVE. You will talk about it for days no matter what the situation. I mentioned it to my doctor the other day...no sh*t. You will thank me as you continue to discuss for weeks and weeks. The director of this film was gracious enough to conduct a Q&A after the screening I attended and it's obvious he is meticulous in his craft as there are a lot of details seen, heard and written that need your full attention. If you love a great story...here it is. Enjoy.
  • Although those who strongly prefer solid action-driven drama will probably not like LEAVE, it is a quiet and subtle little film that unpretentiously raises questions about our notions of life, death, and reality. It's both well-acted and well-filmed, albeit draggy in places. I found myself repeatedly asking, "Huh? Where is all this supposed to be going?" Exercising a little patience, however, I found it all tied together, made sense, and "delivered" in the end.

    Since mood and atmosphere are so important in a film of this type, I can see why some people belittle it for being touchy-feely. Nevertheless, LEAVE has a very strong (if not somewhat uneventful) storyline and is head and shoulders above the solipsistic fluff that we are often subjected to these days.
  • Yet I can't rate it. I can tell you what it isn't...it isn't scary, it isn't suspenseful. What it is in one word...depressing. I'm writing this review in hopes of saving you time and tears.

    Literal tears.

    This movie WILL strike a chord with you and nestle into your ever- tightening chest. It isn't that anything that happens in the movie is truly shocking, it's just woefully sad. If you're looking for a psychological thriller, or a who-dun-it, then you need to move along. I literally balled my eyes out. If you want to be moderately confused, and then cry a lot, watch this.
  • As the ending credits began to roll on LEAVE, I sat there in stunned silence. Overwhelmed by the story that had just unfolded in front of me. The storyline, though gripping and thrilling from beginning to end, was only one part of this movie. Like a single actor delivering their lines. Director Robert Celestino brought me so deep and immersed into this tale, that the journey became personal and it became mine. Stand out performances by Rick Gomez as our troubled writer and Frank John Hughes as the mysterious stranger who enters his world, had me on edge throughout the entire picture. However, it was the cinematography and most importantly the sound that were the real feature stars of this film. Together, they knitted a subconscious fabric throughout the movie, which was so subliminal, that every scene, no matter how benign, still had me feeling a sense of ominous terror. Bringing all of these elements together and delivering a stunning payoff at the end, made this film a terrific, yet terrifying treat.

    LEAVE is a film that crosses the line from story telling to cinematic experience. Few films have the dramatic power to do that, but LEAVE, will stay with you long after the credits have rolled. By Tim Stevens
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Ughhh this movie mildly depressed me.. and that's a compliment. It struck a personal chord with me, I guess it's because I know someone who has gone through something similar to Rick Gomez's character Henry. Most movies would show you the perspective of the people standing on the sidelines watching someone they know suffer from an illness, but in this movie you're given the perspective of the sick person himself, and it was portrayed realistically, emotionally, and psychologically disturbing. It gives you an insight of what they're going through, how it's affecting their lives, and how it's impacted them physically and mentally. And obviously it's not easy. Throughout the film I was just scared for and at the same time, captivated by Henry's struggling. It hit the feels, really. I'm still thinking about it.

    I absolutely love the work done here. Rick Gomez and Frank John Hughes did a brilliant job both in writing the story and their performance. My admiration for them only grew even more, truly talented actors and so underrated by the industry. Great film.
  • I have never been more captivated by a movie in my life and I think this is one of the most outstanding films I have ever seen. Sadly for many people, it will go unnoticed.

    The casting is genius! <-- hard to believe since I've never seen or heard of any of the actors before. And with no visual effects and only 4 characters throughout the entire film - it deserves all 10 stars. I don't even think a bigger budget would add to or could expand on the film's brilliance. The storyline in itself is 10 out of 10.

    Regarding the genre I'd say it's a thriller, but it's not. But it kind of is. It's also a drama. It takes you on a journey of self discovery and really makes your brain tick well after the movie has ended. It might even cause you to shift your perspective on things in your own life. It's also about coming to a crossroads in your life. It's about fear. It's about choices. It's a must see!
  • No idea what the other reviews are about. Trust ME this is utter pants.

    Nuffield said. Watch at ur own peril, and then vote for this short revie........w
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Minor spoilers.....

    Is it the fact that it deals with some of the biggest questions we have as humans, and people don't want to talk about it???

    I thought this film was absolutely beautiful, incredible pacing and cinematography... some of the shots were so clever, especially when you get the eureka moment about what the film is trying to say.

    I got this moment at about the 50 minute mark, when his brother had just made him a lovely meal and he woke up the next day in pain..... and when you reach that moment, you realise exactly what the story being told is.

    I don't think a film has hit me emotionally like this one did, for a very very long time and because of the questions it asks, makes you the viewer start to reflect on the world around you and wonder if this is all but a dream as well. They say the mind is a very powerful tool. I had a near death experience 8 years ago, and who knows, I could still be in the hospital right now.

    Mind blowing.

    Watch this film.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    To be honest I thought this was going to be either a home invasion or stalker type thriller.

    Turns out to be neither, more of a psychological story. I read other reviews on this where they said it's good based on this. Alot of flims are where they have dreams and it's not real and they're on their hospital bed dying.

    Film was sad at the end.
  • I try not to box independent films into single genres, and in this case that helped me enjoy the movie more as it unfolded. I happen to like movies that employ psychological drama, though others might consider it a ploy, because it's really the mind that defines so much of experience. But there is a mystery/thriller element here, too. The two main actors gave strong performances and the drama felt authentic. Having spent most of my life in the Northeast, I was reminded of the tough, dry exterior that men of that region often project, that belie what they might be going through inside. I was able to feel the protagonist's struggle even though the film does not enter into sentimental territory.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I started watching this movie expecting a (hopefully) exciting and/or scary movie, however I was sadly mistaken! This movie is extremely slow, weird, confusing and not entertaining. The ending is silly, incomplete and abrupt. I wish I could get back the time that was wasted from my life by watching this movie!!! If you have the opportunity *not* to watch this movie, DO NOT WATCH IT! A guest brought it over to my house so it would have been rude to turn it off otherwise I would have turned this garbage off less than 5 minutes in.

    Also Bryan Cranston is in this film for less than a few minutes in one scene, I cannot believe they put him as the top actor on here and on the cover of the film! Extremely deceiving movie, it is not good!
  • This is like a poem. A strange fever dream. It's tense and depressing. Be strong before watching this. It's a beautiful strong which slowly unravels. Superb film.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The star of the show in "Leave" was the inventive screenwriter, who devised a philosophical drama, as well as a film "thriller."

    In the first half of the film, a writer, who is troubled by a recurring, violent nightmare about his own death, decides to leave for a brief stint in his retreat in the mountains where he will begin a new novel. The film has set up the viewer for a thriller, especially when Henry, the protagonist, meets a mysterious stranger along the way.

    In the second half, the film moves into the region of the Twilight Zone, when the stranger claims to be Henry's brother Chris, who was believed have died when the younger Henry was still a child.

    But is Chris really the brother? It is here that the film moves into yet another dimension with philosophical insights into the nature of death. Will Henry be using this experience for his novel? Is he imagining the existence of his brother? Who or what is the true nature of the character Chris?

    The film neatly ties up all the loose strands in an extremely thoughtful, final twenty minutes. The performances were all good, the photography was excellent, but, above all, it was the scripting that stood out in this sleeper of an indie.
  • gavin694219 August 2013
    Henry Harper (Rick Gomez) is a successful novelist who has it all. But after surviving a recent trauma he finds himself haunted by a dream that terrifies him. Convinced that the only way to understand what the dream means is to write his way through it, Henry decides to go to a remote second home to begin work on his next novel, a thriller.

    I feel like this film has a lot of potential but never really took off. My interest was not held for much of the (short) duration and that is no compliment. The diner scene is tense and well-acted by everyone, and the "big reveal" there plays out nicely.

    I would have to see this film again to really give it a fair shake, but I have to say that is not a venture I am looking forward to taking any time soon.