Saturday, July 27, 2019

The Incredible Shrinking Wknd - Fantasia 2019 Movie Review

The Movie: The Incredible Shrinking Wknd

The Director: Jon Mikel Caballero

The Cast: Nadia De Santiago, Iria Del Río, Adam Quintero, Luis Tosar

The Story: It's not a loop, it's a countdown: Alba is trapped in her weekend, forced to relive it over and over again, but each repetition gets a bit shorter.

The Review:
If you're thinking this is basically Groundhog Day or Happy Death Day, you are wrong. Mostly. The basic idea of reliving the same day is the same, but the major twist here is that Alba's day gets shorter every time she has to relive it so there is a sense of urgency that builds as her time gets shorter with each attempt t figuring out why the event is happening in the first place. Spanish writer-director Jon Mikel Caballero is no stranger to having success on the festival circuit, having raked in piles of awards for previous efforts so he definitely know how to get genre fans riled up and excited about a movie.

The central character in the story is Alba, played by Iria del Río, really has a lot to deal with in this movie, I mean, her boyfriend breaks up with her and then the next morning, she realizes she has to live the day over and over and over. Talk about an emotional gut punch! Fortunately del Río is up to the task and easily carries the weight of not only delivering a strong performance but also being the centerpiece of the production and having to revisit the same scenes in completely different ways.

Where Jessica Rothe used her opportunity in Happy Death Day to give us a new classic on screen scream queen, del Río takes us on a more thoughtful yet no less emotional journey complete with drug fueled emotional breakdowns and uplifting spiritual breakthroughs. The story actually does make you think about the decisions we make, how we see people, how we interact with people, and how we choose to not interact or take action when we know we should. The Incredible Shrinking Wknd is an intense and intriguing fantasy that never feels repetitive or derivative and features one of the more interesting female lead performances I have seen in some time.

The Incredible Shrinking Wknd is an official selection of the 2019 Fantasia International Film Festival.

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