FLASHBACK * Canada 2020 Dir: Christopher MacBride. 97 mins
Trying to ensure that his life is in order, Fred (Dylan O’Brien) and his wife Karen (Hannah Gross) try to come to terms with his mother’s illness on top of everything going on with their lives. While he attempts his own means of doing so, his dreams begin manifesting into a series of clues about an incident in his past that he believed to have suppressed long ago that starts to interfere with his life in increasingly odd matters, eventually forcing him to recall the experience with a topical drug known as Mercury that played an important part in past that he’s struggling to remember. As he continues to blur the line between dream and reality, a strange woman (Maika Monroe) named Cindy who keeps appearing in his dreams and forces him to unravel the mystery behind everything to save himself.
Unfortunately, that’s the best guess I can make out regarding the plot to this one since this thing is so convoluted and confusing I’m not entirely sure this is accurate but is close enough from what I gathered about the film. There’s so much going on here, from mind-bending drug trips, memory loss, where dreams intercept reality and much more that the ambition to tackle these concepts overstays itself and becomes not only a chore to get through but a distraction keeping everything in place and whether it’s going to tie itself together at the end. This allows for more missing plot points and general confusion as time goes on that is in no way enhanced by the art-school editing and cinematography that just make for an even more convoluted time in here. It’s all visually dynamic and impressive technically but is such a mess storyline-wise that it undoes itself considerably, but fans of films that screw with your mind and logic the way this one does should have a field day with this one.
Review by Don Anelli