Directed by: Charles Alexander Starring: Sophia Brydie, Liam Callahan, and Jo Lloyd-Welcome Indie Film Review by: Owen Herman
A Thin Place, directed by Charles Alexander, takes a dark look at guilt and addiction through the eyes of a young woman, Grace (Sophia Brydie). In the hope of finding answers in her traumatic past to help cure her addictions, Grace undergoes treatment that forces her to confront dark memories.
Told in several distinct parts the film moves forwards and backwards in time as it looks at different moments in Grace’s life. The film also moves between reality and dream like scenarios. Both the viewer and the characters often don’t know whether what they’re seeing is real life or a drug induced nightmare. This structure provides the film’s major downfall. The constant and erratic switching means it is often extremely hard to get a decent grasp on the story. The messages and themes are lost in a mess of flashbacks and dream sequences that stop the drama gaining any momentum. The lack of a coherent narrative results in a film that is hard to engage with, and it leaves the characters lacking real development.
The way the characters suffer because of the structure is a real shame as there are some really good performances that go to waste. Both Sophia Brydie and Liam Callahan could’ve done a lot more with their respective characters if they had been given the chance. The dialogue is well written and certain moments of confrontation stand out, but these characters just aren’t emotionally engaging as the plot is so confusingly put together.
A Thin Place is well shot and there are some really startling images and clever horror moments. However, like the characters, these moments go to waste as they are little more than self-contained moments of shock, as opposed to moments that really impact the story.
Every scene is technically well made, with strong performances and backed by a powerful score. However, it is how all the scenes fit together that is the problem for A Thin Place. At the most basic level the film struggles to tell a coherent and gripping story. There is a lot of promise here, and perhaps a simpler approach would’ve actually benefited the film. A Thin Place is just not as good as it deserved to be.