The Florida Project - Review
Matthew Brady - wrote on 11/14/17
LIFF31 2017 #4
"I can always tell when adults are about to cry".
"The Florida Project" is a bright candy-lit look on Florida lifestyle, which has it's dark moments underneath. The beautiful, but trashy Disney parody is presented from a little girls point of view. Every serious or traumatic event are completely overshadowed by a child; we only see it in the background. To be honest, a lot of the scenes in the film reminded me of "Moonlight". Little details that added to the similarities, but different in execution.
I haven't seen Sean Baker's "Tangerine ", so this is my first film from him and I gotta tell ya, it's a great start. While Baker directing isn't anything I could call a true master or anything, but the way directs certain scenes, even the ridiculous ones brings such life to the film. Mixed with the amazing cinematography is pure magic.
The performances from everyone and several of the kid actors were all fantastic. A breakout role for Bria Vinaite and a impressive one from Brooklynn Prince, who carries the film. The camera is locked onto her through out. You never lose your focus, which alone is an accomplishment. This is best I've seen from Willem Dafoe. A restrain and moving performance that every time he leaves the screen, you miss him.
My only issues with the film is sound editing. Some sound didn't match up or was delayed after it's action, such as fireworks. Then there's the ending which was so bad and out of place with the rest of movie, stopping it from being a perfect movie for me. The quality of being shot on a phone just looked sloppy compared to the rest of the film. It's like they didn't know how to end it.
Putting complaints aside, this is still a phenomenal character study. Striking an emotional core with me. One of finest movies of 2017.