Monday, 16 March 2015

REVIEW - CATCH ME DADDY (DANIEL WOLFE)


Everyday life as both thriller and horror, and naturally so. Not Catch Me Daddy's tension nor its terror, nor even its startling emotions, exist as the result of some artistic machinations, though Daniel Wolfe displays a canny touch for intensification through stylistic manipulation. The sad and scary honesty of their conceit hits hardest, even if it's tinged by a slight complacency; Catch Me Daddy seems more concerned with relating the artistry it has sought out and discovered in a story that appears to repel all such pretensions than it is concerned with relating the truthfulness on which it is founded. Put simply, some of the power is lost in the pretense. But what skill there is in this film, particularly in the aforementioned ability of the filmmakers to extract stylish storytelling from a scenario that might seem immune to anything of the sort. Robbie Ryan's cinematography is highly expressive, depicting images either of hope and clarity seeping into bleak, foggy despair or of the opposite - smart summarisations of the film's preoccupation with the juxtaposition of personal happiness with the brutality, even lethality, of human existence. Daniel and co-writer Matthew Wolfe present their protagonist as a person of contradictions, a fragile figure of delicacy and modernity literally set against a variety of intolerant cultures, intent either on reverting her nature to theirs and destroying her identity or on simply destroying her life. Given the mix of apparent inevitability and persistent hope, Catch Me Daddy works best at its most elemental, as a tale of the struggle to evade and escape one's real-life demons. It's everyday life indeed, both horrible and horribly thrilling.