While searching for isolation, a young man moves to live aboard a sailboat on New York's East River.While searching for isolation, a young man moves to live aboard a sailboat on New York's East River.While searching for isolation, a young man moves to live aboard a sailboat on New York's East River.
Although essentially this is August's story in a nutshell, it is the telling of the story that makes it. Led by a narrator we are given a simple but well structured tale which is driven by the phrasing and tone of the narration. This is really the heart of the film for me and it is such a key part that the other strong factors are centered around this. The use of Jim Handley as narrator is great – I have no idea who he is and his resume here is empty, but his voice is assured, secure, familiar and safe – it is hard not to be drawn into it. It reminds me very much of Ricky Jay's narration at the start of Magnolia as the voice has the same effect. The use of music supports the voice and although it is a little "cutesy", it is saved by how well it comes together with the whole.
Of course the dialogue is important and this is also mostly a solid literary style with good tone, pacing and choice of words and phrasing. The choice of shots and the gentle length of them also fits with this and ultimately what you have is a short film that is unremarkable for any one aspect but yet comes together really well, with the whole being more than just the sum of its parts. It isn't amazing but it is surprising just how effective and satisfying it is.
- bob the moo
- Jan 31, 2014