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Backlight (2010) Movie Poster
Portugal / USA  •    •  90m  •    •  Directed by: Fernando Fragata.  •  Starring: Joaquim de Almeida, Michelle Mania, Skyler Day, Scott Bailey, Joseph Hagler, Evelina Pereira, Donovan Scott, Ana Cristina de Oliveira, Jeff Swarthout, Renee Ainsworth, James LaGrappe, Caitlin Carmichael, Catherine Carmichael.  •  Music by: Nuno Malo.
     Several characters who are each at critical stages of their lives are strangely impelled towards an uncharted lake in the middle of the desert where they all have the opportunity to save each other.


   Length:  Languages:  Subtitles:


Image from: Backlight (2010)
Image from: Backlight (2010)
Image from: Backlight (2010)
Image from: Backlight (2010)
Image from: Backlight (2010)
You should watch this film. On Prime in Stereo on TV speakers to improve the audio. The cinematography was amazing. The locations were stunning. Award worthy.

The Story was strong. Had it not been for the grade-school acting by a few of the characters, I'm thinking of Mom, this would have been an amazing movie. I was sitting up in my seat as the storylines converged. Slow to get there so shortening things would improve viewer attention. I'm not sure the early foreshadowing of the car rolling helped things or just added to viewer confusion. I think it made things worse.

I've read some reviews saying the storyline was forced and the script mangled. They aren't wrong, but they aren't seeing the big picture. This story is all about the climax. Getting there is quite convoluted so at times the viewer has to be lead there, witness the dreadful narration in the overwrought air-park script, but those times are long forgotten by the time we get to the end and all you are left with is, I hate to repeat it, an uplifting experience.

The only thing in the movie worse than the acting (not all of which was bad) were the off-screen dialogs. Please, please re-record these with a proper voice actors, not someone not 'phoning it in'. This would have been a better movie had the off-screen voices been subtitled from any language other than English. Watching this in my native tongue was painful at times, credit some terrible dialog and overwrought script. Should be a great international success. Too bad no one has dubbed it yet, at least on Amazon.

In general I find movie dialog difficult to hear. Others have said the sound mix was awful, overpowering the dialog. Perhaps this was a godsend done on purpose. I watched this on Amazon Prime in stereo from TV speakers. The dialog was clear and the music thematic and uplifting. Perhaps had I watched it in surround it would have sucked. I don't know.

I just checked. In Dolby the background sounds and music were overwhelming and need to be remixed by someone who has graduated from high-school. If you hated the sound when you first saw this movie, watch it again on Prime in stereo from mediocre TV speakers and you will gain a much better appreciation of the film.

In the process of testing the audio, knowing how the story unfolds, the movie, characters, and dare I say it, the acting hang together much better. I'm no professional but someone dropped the ball on this. It seems as if the final cuts were done by someone who had seen this film dozens of times and lost the perspective of the first-time viewer.

@Fernando_Fragata: Great movie. I am an amateur so take these comments for what they are worth: Rewrite, shorten and re-record all off-screen dialog with voice actors that can show some emotion (don't overdo it). I'm thinking of the dreadful therapist dialog. Edit and shorten on-screen to match. Get a second opinion from qualified script and voice consultants. Just remind them that none of the film is getting re-shot. Tone way down the background sound effects. Turn up the dialog from the soft-spoken male character. Bring in a sound professional to get it right. A few plots and acting were overdone. I'm thinking of Mom. Cutting her non-critical scenes and shortening all of her critical scenes will improve things. The older male character scenes were fine but in the interest of getting to the point I'd look to shorten the non-plot scenes here too. Did the foreshadow of the car rolling help the film? Looks like a patch added to make things more attainable to the viewer but I don't think it succeeded. Consider cutting it. Do a complete rewrite, shorten and rerecord all off-screen voices by professional voice actors that can provide just a bit of emotion to their reading. Don't over do it. Re-release this in 4k as a 2020 'directors cut' and sell it to Netflix. It will be worth the effort and expense to turn this good movie into a great movie. I've never heard of a 10-year old movie remix getting awards, but this would be worth it.

Review by morefog from the Internet Movie Database.