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Overall Rating

Awesome: 18.75%
Worth A Look31.25%
Just Average: 14.58%
Pretty Crappy: 12.5%
Sucks: 22.92%

5 reviews, 18 user ratings

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by Dust For Eyes

"No feelings of anguish, torment or anxiety about this film"
4 stars

Itís Two Hands meets Clerks in this vibrant Australian comedy.

Trying to establish the direction your life is always going to be a tricky, complex and scary experience. Get it wrong and hey, youíve got your entire life to regret it - your life could turn into one of those tiresome mini-series tragedies that we get too much of on TV. You might get someone cute to play you, but thatís no consolation as you stumble from one modified-for-dramatic-purposes calamity to another.

What has already happened in a young personís life already is of course important to any future direction. So if there are any of those pesky little unresolved Issues popping up, big or small, itís important to resolve them so you are able to approach the future with vigour and resolve.

In other words, get over it and get a life.

Dean (Lewis) works in a video store. Heís writing a screenplay, but itís not really going anywhere. He broke up with his girl friend a while ago, but heís still to get fully over it. His housemate, Ian (Smith, from the Australian production of Rent) works at a sex aid shop. He has hopes of a career as a stand up comic, but canít find the nerve to take that first big step onto a stage. In the sex aid shop, Dean whacks a street kid over the head who was trying to rob them. They take the kid home who is befriend by Jade (Napier) who takes him to heart. Meanwhile Dean meets up with May (Tucker) who helps him get over his ex-girlfriend.

The film is about three people exorcising their demons that are preventing them achieving their goals. Dean has to get over his girlfriend, Ian needs to get over his origins and his fear of wanting to be a comic and Jade wants her life to have more to it than just smoking dope and watching horror movies.

As the character thatís given the most attention Dean is the one we learn most about as Ian and Jade are relegated to secondary concerns. Consequently itís Deanís character and his story that the film hinges most on - and itís not a bad thing to hinge on. Sure heís a bit of a pain, but heís funny, and his story does take some unexpected turns.

In this heavily character-based film, your view of whether you like these people will determine whether you like the film as a whole. Dean nearly got on my nerves, but thanks to the like-ability of the others I was able to like this film. These characters and the good (not great) humour make this an enjoyable and accessible film.

What makes it like Kevin Smithís Clerks? Well there is a Star Wars reference (essential for Kevin Smith films), obsessive film references, and the guy is a clerk in a going nowhere store, but thereís no Silent Bob and Jay. So itís not quite that good, but still worthy of our attention as the dialogue has some wit, and there is some interesting methods shown on how to exorcise those personal demons. Itís the pace and tone of Angst that is most reminiscent of Kevin Smithís popular film.

The Two Hands links come in the Kings Cross setting and the dry, comical dialogue - thankfully there are no ghosts.

Very few films have opening credits worth talking about, except maybe The Pink Panther films where the opening credits were threatening to upstage the rest of the film. As with Two Hands, Angst has some great looking opening credits - all those swirly, glossy blues. Nice.

Despite the sleek hi-fi opening credits, director Nettheim has kept things decidedly lo-fi for the rest of the film. The switch from the credits to the main action is actually a bit of a jolt. There is nevertheless some interesting visuals and scene switching without being too gimmicky. Napier is never quite all there as Jade, but thatís what her character was meant to be, Tucker is aloof and alluring, Smith is loveable in a nerdy sort of way and Lewis is pleasant enough in an annoying kind a way.

As we see Dean, Ian and Jade, come to terms with their past, and so come to terms with their future, we the audience experience a droll and fun film. Feel no angst in seeing Angst - seeing this film is easily an enjoyable and not thoughtless experience.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=4388&reviewer=166
originally posted: 08/23/00 19:32:52
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User Comments

1/13/05 Arlo B Its a movie where the characters work in a video shop and talk movies. Need I say more? 1 stars
7/10/04 Benito Nice "more than just teenage", but still teenage film 5 stars
2/24/04 Rachel Excellent. Hard to find. Justin Smith and Luke Lennox are stand outs. 5 stars
7/28/03 Will Definately in the Top 10 Australian films! 5 stars
10/30/02 Liam Freeman Cliched, over-done, self conscious, Sydney-centric rubbish. 1 stars
10/15/01 bri i thought it was awsome.. 4 stars
9/27/01 The-ALpha enjoyed it, one of the first sympathetic portrayals of a goth i've ever seen. Charming cast 4 stars
9/13/01 Corvus Got that slightly surreal 'Cross by night vibe down perfect! 5 stars
9/03/01 CAZZA cool movie 4 stars
4/11/01 Dave C Come on man! This was some funny shit! 5 stars
2/15/01 Kay Green I love Abi Tucker , I could use some makeup tips from her!! 5 stars
2/03/01 Brooke MAD!!!!!!! 5 stars
1/21/01 Pokka self-conscious, try-hard, woeful script! 1 stars
8/31/00 Klute Just completely tragic. Woeful. 1 stars
8/29/00 Vince A real surprise. Smart and funny. Good stuff. 5 stars
8/28/00 Pepo Buntman Funniest Aussie flick for years 5 stars
8/25/00 Belinda I walked out of this and I saw it for free!! 1 stars
8/17/00 neil bartlett its all been done before 3 stars
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  31-Aug-2000 (M)

Directed by
  Daniel Nettheim

Written by
  Antony O'Connor

  Sam Lewis
  Jessica Napier
  Justin Smith
  Abi Tucker
  Lara Cox
  Ben Agier

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