I was pleased to find that our theater was showing Another Earth this week. I went into this movie not knowing much about it, just that it was supposed to be a drama with some sci-fi elements to it. And, really, that's exactly what it is. Our planet has come into contact with another, identical planet. And just as our world stops to take in this breaking news, Rhoda Williams' world is about to be wrecked.
This is the story about a bright young girl who, while drinking and driving, crashes into another car, killing the wife and child of a composer, John Burroughs. After serving a four year sentence, the girl is left with nothing else but to try and cope with what she's done. And so she eventually decides to seeks out the man who's family she took from him. What results is a gripping experience that swiftly snatches your attention and never lets go. This story keeps you wanting to learn more, and you truly become invested in the outcome that our characters will ultimately have to face.
I feel like I have so much to say about this movie, yet I find myself having trouble coming up with the proper words. It's one of those movies where I don't want to say too much, because part of the brilliance of this film really comes from watching the fascinating ways the events in this story unfold. Driving home this fascination are a few key scenes that I can really only describe as strange. At first, these scenes seem almost out of place. Yet they play out in such a natural way that really compliments the themes and gives this movie a more human feel.
Technically speaking, the beginning is a little shaky. The handheld filmmaking takes a little getting used to, and some of the editing initially feels a bit choppy. However, as the narrative plays out, these issues cease to persist. The pacing in this movie is flawless, keeping you thoroughly engaged from start to finish, with never a dull moment. And at times the movie works as somewhat of a silent film, and the musical score accompanying these scenes do a tremendous job of setting the mood just right.
The sci-fi elements play as more of a backdrop, with little bits and pieces of it gradually interwoven as the story progresses. But just like the main plot, the more we learn about this second Earth, the more interesting things become. And by the end, this is a movie that really leaves you thinking. About what? Well, like I said, I don't wanna give away too much. Just know that it's an intriguing story with excellent performances by its leads, and it deals with its themes in a respectable manner. It's a smaller movie, though, so it only got a limited release. However, if you get the chance, this is definitely one movie worth checking out.