Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Looking for Grace

Grace is a teenager, who steals $13 000 from her parents' safe and runs away from home, leaving a note saying "sorry Mum"  Looking for Grace tells this not-very-complicated story from  five different viewpoints - those of Grace herself, her Mum Denise, her Dad Dan, retired detective Tom and a  truck driver called Bruce.
The description in the film festival programme suggests the film is about her parents enlisting the services of a retired detective and following clues to find their daughter but this credits the film with a great deal more plot than it actually has. Rather than relating the solving of a mystery, Looking for Grace is more an empathetic look at five  individuals. who have somewhat dysfunctional relationships.The writer/director (who was at the screening we went to) said the film has " a very Australian sensibility" and that it would be interesting to see whether New Zealand audiences warmed to it. I'm not sure what very Australian sensibility she meant but I'm guessing that she was referring to the not-very- demonstrative and not-very-communicative nature of the interpersonal relationships.All the characters had major secrets that their nearest and dearest didn't know about - an extra-marital affair, a child from a previous relationship, a business that wasn't financially viable to name just some. The characters, their flaws and their relationships  are conveyed sympathetically and humourously and they're pretty likeable but the film lacks much of a plot and much of a point so it's ultimately frustrating. And we never do find out why Grace's note says "sorry Mum" The trailer is a quick version of the film without the frustrating element.

Anne's rating 2.5/5 Ian's rating 3/5

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