Always Shine

2016

Drama / Thriller

18
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 91%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 57%
IMDb Rating 5.6 10 2749

Synopsis


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1hr 25 min
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NR
23.976 fps
1hr 25 min
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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by HypnoticPoison7 7 / 10

Conflicted

The only reason I give this movie a 7 is because I was enjoying it right up until the last few minutes. I was so disappointed with the ending that I considered rating it a 4 (due to the script not being very philosophical or interesting for an indie flick with a clear agenda), but Mackenzie Davis SAVED this.

If you watch the movie knowing the ending is going to disappoint you, then you may just enjoy it that much more. I wish I had known. I felt that it ended abruptly and had no point. The dialogue wasn't great throughout, and I was disappointed in basically all of the acting, aside from Mackenzie. She was so magnetic in this, she really pulled me in. By the end, I wanted to be her. In that sense, this movie is worth seeing. However, if you like films with a beginning, middle, and a proper end, then just pass this one up and save yourself the time.

Reviewed by sifu crockett 1 / 10

A film unjustifiably earning praise

Always Shine is in the ilk of Certain Women. Meaning that because its leads are women, it's about women, and its director is a woman (Sophia Takal)... it must, by default, be spectacular.

Well, sorry to say, it most definitely is not!

Not a single review here to-date touches on the fact that this film borrows — LIFTS — heavily (and poorly) from Ingmar Bergman's 'Persona'.

Nor do any of this film's fawning fans notice how it is over-dabbling with the currently overused device of Multiple Personality Disorder (now known as D.I.D.).

This is an appallingly bad film.

There are enough hints dropped to suggest these girls ARE split personalities of the one character, however... there is also either an abundant LACK of evidence to confirm it, or CONTRADICTORY evidence to refute it.

Make up your friggen mind!

Seriously, nothing makes sufficient sense here. And because this film is going out of its way to raise questions, but does it so illogically, I will not waste my time rifling thru the trash to unveil the hidden truths. This film does not deserve that sort of rigour. That sort of introspection.

Always Shine also bears no capacity for concealing its feminist agenda. Shame on you for being so blatant. There also exists no intelligence in this script to neither do that sublimely nor tell a coherent story.

At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself what the point was? What was really worth telling here? And why tell it in such an intentionally obscure way? Could it be because they thought that being obscure meant being smart? Clever? Original?

Then we have the typical indie ending. A useless long shot of nothing (this time, our lead walking up a hill in a forest); then the moment of long staring; then... the notorious abrupt cut to black.

Praising the acting, which is indeed excellent, makes up for none of the poor choices made repeatedly in both the writing and the directing. To think that investors were talked into throwing money at this concept. What a waste.

See it only if you have an old TV you're looking to toss out, so you can throw things at the screen, then put your foot thru it at the end.

Reviewed by wildsparrow16 7 / 10

I didn't want it to end...

This movie is about two young, struggling actresses whose friendship is dying and they know it, so they plan a girls retreat in a remote cabin in Big Sur. One is beautiful, in a committed relationship, gets admiration where she goes, and has had some steady gigs. She is kind and gentle - much like the character "Chloe" that she plays on the show Rectify. The other is the better actress yet can't get cast, she is alone, has average looks and is very mentally unstable - we see this in the first few scenes and it builds from there. Gee, what could possibly go wrong on this trip? If Single White Female and In Her Skin had a love-child, it would be this movie - on steroids. But make no mistake - this is no chick flick. There is plenty of psychological suspense to go around. This is all accomplished with no gore, no blood. The ending could be improved upon, but at least it won't leave you in the dust. I strongly recommend this movie if you are into psychological thrillers.

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