Published on November 1st, 2005 | by Greg0
“Nothing;” is Something
There are far too few late 20-something realistic movies.. Apparently, all 25-35 year-olds drink heavily, sleep around, and have really dramatic lives revolving around high-paying jobs in New York City.
For the rest of us, or at least a few more of us, there’s Nothing (available on DVD). One of the rare films that actually takes place where it was filmed (Toronto), the movie’s plot is pretty thin but doesn’t need any extra thickness. Two guys, abandoned, abused, and accused of crimes they didn’t commit wish for it all to go away… and it does.
A pretty clever premise, the movie seems almost based on a play- simple or non-existent sets, some existential confusion that inevitably ends in videogame matches, only two real characters in the entire film. A movie like this lives or dies on it’s acting and direction, and luckily Nothing pulls together. It never quite lives up to its engaging and amusing opening minutes- but you’re not quite sure where it will go, just as the characters are not quite sure where it all went.
Directed by Vincenzo Natali, who previously made another movie of a very different type from a similarly barebones premise (Cube), Nothing isn’t funny enough to be a comedy and lacks the action or pizazz of a science fiction movie. The closest category would probably be “absurdist drama”, like Alice in Wonderland or Samuel Beckett, but it manages to be plenty of engaging for a film with a cast of two. The music is minimal, the special effects are perfectly acceptable- it is the cinematography and storyline that makes the film.
Nothing isn’t the best movie of the year, and it likely won’t appeal to kids or grownups, but it is one of the better recent movies about that lost age group in between.