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Numb

Numb (2003) Movie Poster
USA  •    •  77m  •    •  Directed by: Michael Ferris Gibson.  •  Starring: Jennifer West Savitch, Dominik Overstreet, Anne Goldmann, Peter Abraham, Colin Thomson, Mike Dingle, Matt Heckert, Kelsie Svekerr, Keitha Cole, Micah Epstein, Chris Corporandy, Dawn Walters, Peter Macon.  •  Music by: Mark De Gli Antoni, Eric Holland, Greg Lenczycki.
    In a future where emotion and desire have been wiped away by an unshakable new narcotic, society exists simply to provide a constant source of the drug. Crumbling Yerba city stands empty, except for its drug-parlors, where the remnants of the population cluster, drifting towards oblivion. Only the android attendants are still capable of action, mindlessly maintaining and administering the 'drip'. Years after escaping to the wastelands outside the city, Claire, one of the few people left who is not an addict, returns looking for the one man who still matters to her. As she makes her way through the dazed world of the city's junkies, only one person seems able to provide any help: the obsessive and self-destructive Miles, the last of the city's security officers. Genetically engineered to be immune to the drug, Miles' strange charisma draws Claire to him, but when he brutally guns down a group of harmless dissidents, she begins to doubt she can really trust anyone. With no other leads, Claire warily sets out with Miles towards Tiburon, a secret community outside the city that may be the last hold-out against the drug... and may bring Claire face to face with her past.

Review:

Image from: Numb (2003)
Image from: Numb (2003)
Image from: Numb (2003)
Image from: Numb (2003)
Image from: Numb (2003)
Image from: Numb (2003)
In a post-apocalyptic world, people are addicted to "the drip", an intravenous drug (something like an opiate) that causes people to zone out and stare off into space. A woman named Claire is searching for her father, the inventor of the drip, through a stark, empty landscape. She meets up with a man called Miles, who is also off the drip, and the two of them move through an empty landscape discussing the debilitating disease that is life and generally being existentially angsty.

The cover for this movie literally called out to me, comparing it to such masterpieces as THX 1138, Stalker, and Alphaville. I certainly didn't expect it to be as good as any of those films, but I definitely expected it to be better than this! The story, performances, and imagery are all generally decent, and should have added up to a relatively enjoyable or at least compelling experience. However, the directing came off as a bit lazy, and this movie serves as the first time I've ever found editing to be pretentious. Mostly, however, the movie lacks a hook.

Tarkovsky, Godard, and Lucas Gibson doesn't try to be--though at one point I think he thinks he's Polanski--but he definitely gives off a sense of being taught by the philosophical science fiction creators. There is no single ingredient in this film I don't like: post-apocalypse, drug warfare, philosophical pretenses, high contrast black and white photography; however, Gibson seems to have forgotten the part where we're supposed to care. These characters only seem to exist, and the continual cutting back and forth between Claire's idyllic memories in color and the contemporary moment, plus the non-chronological editing that was anything but revealing, makes the whole film sort of drudge by directionlessly. With sharp visuals such as this had, one's eyes shouldn't be flickering constantly to the timer.

All in all, as a low budget, somewhat short science fiction feature, I guess it's not entirely bad. I don't think it has any real sticking power; and hopefully Gibson is using it more as a way to learn methods of film-making so that he can go on to improve, rather than thinking he's created anything profound.


Review by Polaris_DiB from the Internet Movie Database.

 

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Oct 13 2016, 15:32
Oct 13 2016, 15:30