Now you see me now you dont movie poster Compressed.jpg

Now You See Me, Now You Don't

3.833335
Average: 3.8 (6 votes)
The Buddy Movie
Christchurch > 08

What a lovely story, simple and uncluttered and elegantly told, almost entirely without dialogue. We see a girl playing with her imaginary friend in various settings, and while it's quite sweet, there's also a sort of sadness about it, something you can't quite put your finger on. I was pretty sure there was going to be some sort of twist or reveal coming, although the stuff I had in mind was quite different to what we got. And what we got was a knife being stabbed into our hearts and twisted around.

If I'm looking for criticisms, I can maybe find a few minor things to quibble about. The 'rules' of the imaginary friend felt slightly variable in terms of what we were seeing, although perhaps that's just me missing some things. The final scene with the magic trick was momentarily confusing in terms of timeline, although the sepia filter helped to establish the flashback nature of it.

One thing I really appreciated was how much they trusted the intelligence of the audience at the end, specifically in terms of just showing the photo and trusting that we'd see the tube feeding into the girl's nose and put two and two together, without having to spell it out. The crushing nature of that end reveal is interesting also in that it takes you a few beats to first assemble what the reality is, and then contemplate what the ramifications of that must be for the girl, for the girl's parents, and so on.

(Also, I only just realised this was in the Buddy Movie genre - fantastic interpretation!)

This is probably the closest the team have made to a spiritual successor to their classic "Polaroid", and that's very much meant as a compliment. I enjoy all the flavours of what Submission Impossible can do, but there's something special about their ability to set up a platform then knock it down in an emotionally raw and affecting fashion. Great stuff.

awh guys, my heart can only take so much.

The quality was on point as expected, you kept the pace up enough for us to stay engaged but also took enough time for us to take in the world of the little girl. I had a few questions at the end around the rules of the invisible character, as to at one point did we get out of the little girls head (I assume we were in her head with the ice cream being eaten and the scooter following behind etc), but that doesn't affect the arc of the story that much for me, by the time the other girl was on screen I knew we were about to have a sad reveal and even though I knew that It still got me so damn hard in the feels.

This is very special and possibly my favourite film you've done to date.

Also I know we've been joking all month about best team intro but I did watch all the team intros and yours is by far the best so if you don't get it then the world is backwards.

MistaTeas
5.04

I felt a few slight echoes of 2013's "The Sleeping Plot" with this film - young girl driving a story based around a friendship with a secret to the audience; same-same but different! No doubt it's a sweet story, that's solidly crafted and sets the audience up pretty well for the reveal at the end. I'm typically cynical so I wrote down pretty early "friend died" in my notes - hoping I was wrong! Possibly I would have liked a greater show of the relationship between the two girls rather than the friend being invisible for all but one scene - I personally didn't see (or remember) enough to suggest the depth of the girl's loss. yet, you could also argue that the whole imaginary friend thing is a great example of just this and her coping mechanism. Some nice use of locations especially Horseshoe Lake - that's just around from my house!

Films like this I find difficult to review. This is a competition film that ticks a lot of boxes and the muted applause and collective "awws" from the screening audience probably tell you everything.

Beautiful and poignant, shot and directed well, with clear story - everything we have come to expect from Submission Impossible. I agree, the 'rules' of imagination/imaginary friend were slightly blurry at times, I would have preferred we see it entirely from the outside, with no acknowledgment that there was really someone else there. The wee actress was so so good, she is destined for big things!
Most memorable intro I've seen, pretty sure that award is yours this year

in truth this is the team that should win team intro.

The image at the end of the into is just priceless.

Submission Impossible’s Best film to date? I think perhaps so. Although I am a huge fan of Polaroid.

There are two things that i really like about this film, and they are kind of one and the same.

The first is just the overall tone and style, more and more 48hours films are starting to feel like sketches and not short films (i blame the 5minute thing) this film feels like a short film through and through. Tied into that its also Submission Impossible’s most cinematic film to date. With so much of the story told visually.

Which brings me to the other great thing. The ending. As Nimble pointed out. It’s great that the film gives you everything you need to understand what’s happened and in that moment completely changes your understanding of what you’ve been seeing. Its the perfect way to roll drama and tragedy into the film. Suddenly the character and performance are that much more painful and tragic.

Great take on the genre too.

It’s also been noted by others here. Once the twist is delivered and you start to understand what you’ve been watching. Some of the content starts to break under examination? Or does it? I’m not quite sure. But therein lies the issue.

And its another minor thing, and i feel bad mentioning it after praising the tone and style but the film probably could have been a touch tighter in terms of the edit? I don’t know. It didn’t feel it’s length while i was watching it, its just that in hindsight i can’t help but feel it would have been stronger if it was a bit tighter?

Finals bound i bet. It’s also one of those films that will no doubt benefit from a second viewing. Great work team.

nshady
5.04

I really enjoyed this one. I liked how you relied on a lot of visual storytelling - minimal dialogue, clear action, and a winning lead performance. I thought I knew where it was going, and then I didn't, but rather than feel like an unearned twist, I was still on board. Nicely poetic, cleanly made, and a deserving finalist. Well done!

Alexander Jones
city manager

There's a lot of charm in this film. The lack of dialogue and quirky music create a really well-paces and intriguing atmosphere.

This feels like a more stylistic departure to what SubImp have done before, as usually their films are quite dialogue driven, or based around a central mystery. This one instead feels more like a mystery, and the peacefulness and fun of the film has really grown on me with each rewatch.

Well done directing a kid - She does a great job and would have made a pretty baller 2018 Ultra (which probably would have 'counted' more than the loophole you guys exploited last year :P)

Also, the locations are really fun, you went all over town and did a good job working with a rainy day!

While there feels like a strong hand on direction here, I do have some questions - some logic gaps which have kept me from completely getting on board with this film:
The film seems to present the situation as the girl has an invisible friend, but at the end its revealed her friend died... But This doesn't feel like the rest of the logic of the film adds up to this? I could maybe understand the disappearing act as being a metaphor for her disappearance, but if the girl died, then who is eating the other ice cream or riding the other scooter? It feels a little like you were writing a story about an imaginary friend, and then decided to give it a tragic twist, as opposed to landing on that ending and working clues back in through the first part of the script.

While we're on the tragic twist as well, I'm actually not a big fan of it - I think it kind of betrays the tone of the film, and not in a "what a surprise ending" way, but in a way where the whimsy and delight doesn't seem to even slow down for the reveal - Sorry to be such a fusspot gang! I love you more than words can say.

TITLE REVIEW: I think this title is maybe a little to easy or simple for a story about magic, maybe something more aligned with imaginary friends would have been cool.