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Joe Finds Grace

average rating is 4 out of 5


Jason Knight


Posted on:

Sep 27, 2022

Film Reviews
Joe Finds Grace
Directed by:
Anthony Harrison
Written by:
Anthony Harrison
Anthony Harrison, C. Ernst Harth, Ellie Harvie, Dmitry Chepovetsky, Chilton Crane

A man with a disfigurement and intellectual disabilities decides to search for his long lost sister.


Joseph (Harrison) is a patient in an institution, who also works at a dock. He has a facial disfigurement and general learning disabilities and he is a quiet person. One day, after reading a leaflet, he suddenly embarks on a journey, with the intention of finding his sister Grace, who disappeared many years ago, when he was a child. The harbour's boss Horst (Harth) goes looking for Joseph (or Joe), along with the help of his girlfriend Eva (Harvie). What follows is a journey that gets the three of them into awkward and dangerous situations.


This interesting feature could be described as a comedy drama road movie. The narrative basically consists of two storylines, which are the adventures of Joe and those of Horst and Eva, that alternate between them. The movie can be funny, dramatic or surreal. Just like that, Joe abandons everything and sets off to locate his sister, an objective that seems absurd and rather unlikely to be achieved. He hitchhikes a great deal and encounters an aggressive homeless man, unwillingly has an audition and stumbles upon a dangerous criminal.Meanwile, Horst and Eva end up spending more time enjoying themselves, instead of looking for Joe and find themselves on the wrong side of the law. In comparison to Joe's, their experiences during their journey are more light-hearted.


The majority of the film is in black-and-white, with brief sequences of colour and animation. There are moments where colour briefly takes over, then leaving the image in black-and-white again. The animated scenes serve mostly as flashbacks, providing an insight into Joe's past and his motivation for beginning his search. There are also parts that mix animation with live action. The animation looks great thanks to the efforts of Harrison and the cinamatography by James Wallace.


Harrison also worked on the editing and makes effective use of split screen and dissolve techniques. The filmmakers also make frequent use of fast motion, which provides a comedic feeling.


There are quite a few interesting people in this movie and as the main character, Joe comes across as a good person, yet he is reserved and does not talk much. He is haunted by the memories from the day his sister went missing and believes that he is partly responsible for her disappearance. The majority of the story is seen through Joe's eyes and Harrison does a good job in presenting him as a tragic character. Harth and Harvie's performaces are quite comical, making their characters amusing but hard to be taken seriously, which is not a bad thing.


This is a film that is sometimes very emotional and sometimes funny. It mainly revolves around an individual who is isolated from the world, who is struggling to come to terms with his past and who seems to be looking for redemption. It is a story about self-discovery, about making amends and it deserves recognition.

About the Film Critic
Jason Knight
Jason Knight
Indie Feature Film
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