Directed by: #LucyVico
Written by: #LucyVico
Short Film Review by: #ChrisBuick
Silent Ways is the writing and directorial debut from Mexican filmmaker and actress Lucy Vico, which begins with us seeing the final embers of the love between Georgie (Vico) and Frank (Alin) dying out. From there, we are taken back through their time together to the very beginning, watching an unravelled relationship reset itself to the point of origin, as well as hearing from both all the things they have left unsaid, in the end being left to wonder how things could have turned out differently had they been honest to one another.
We all know communication is hugely important in any relationship, and the film does a great job to emphasise the damage its absence can be, making the concept here both entirely relatable and universal. We gain insight into both Georgie’s and Frank’s own personal insecurities, how their past pain is still hindering them going forward, and ultimately how this is seeping into this relationship as well. As the film continues backwards, the overlying thoughts of the characters offer an effective juxtaposition to what is playing out on the screen, by the end offering a sad glimpse at the love they once had that is now lost due to their inability to express their feelings towards one another.
While admittedly it is not hugely important to make the piece effective, there are hints and nods and to a specific dispute taking place within the film and its exact nature is unclear, leaving us perhaps to wonder if there was another catalyst for the breakdown between these two. Also, while the visuals for the most part are on point and help the piece along, some of the accompanying monologues become slightly generic and monotonous and create kind of a confusing barrage of broad strokes.
But the acting quality cannot be denied here, with convincing turns from both Vico and Alin (Vico herself winning Best Actress at the Monaco Charity Film Festival), and the two really manage to draw you into to the point that you find yourself saddened by the end where after seeing what they had, you know that inevitably their relationship has an expiration date. Finally, there is the simple yet well-placed score which ties it all together and further invokes that sense of melancholy that really helps the piece hit home.
All in all, Silent Ways is a brilliantly touching short with a strong core concept delivered in an elegantly simple way. Having already shortlisted on several award circuits, Vico certainly seems like a filmmaker with vision whose future projects should be ones to look out for.