Directed by: Amber Sealey
Written by: Amber Sealey
Produced by: Amber Sealey, Gabriel Fleming
Starring: Amber Sealey, Anton Saunders
Run Time: 82 min
There are a lot of artsy people out there who believe that because a movie is independent, it’s automatically art and better than some drivel you’d see in a normal theater or on T.V. Then there’s some people who know that no you much you polish a brown nugget into a gold one. A+D is the epitome of rubbish filled with emotional nonsense that left me literally drinking a gallon of water so I had an excuse to step out and use the restroom every few minutes.
A+D is a self described “universal story of relationships” but it’s not. A+D is a movie about a mentally unstable woman who thinks nagging is witty and how miserable a man would become who’s stupid enough not to notice the telltale warning signs that she’s totally insane. Was there romance in the story? No, there was artsy romance which only appeals to lonely old women. Was there conflict in the story? Yes a lot of it but it was all passive aggressive emotional nonsense that just makes you want to hit someone with a baseball bat. A more accurate description of the story should be: “An in depth look at why men don’t want to talk, listen or respect the female gender.”
Alice, played by Amber Sealey, is a witty artist who finds love in a passive aggressive man named Dave, played by Anton Saunders. Their relationship is strange as Dave mysteriously finds Alice’s complaints about his eyebrows and her statements saying that his work isn’t art witty and attractive instead of a huge red flag. They spend their days making love and repeating the same words to each other as they look at each other’s naked bodies in the mirror of the bathroom in the flat.
It doesn’t take long for Alice and Dave’s blossoming relationship to sour. Alice begins to ask questions that she obviously doesn’t want the answer to (“Do you think about having sex with other women?”) and when she gets them she’s obviously bothered and begins to pick at Dave’s fragile ego. Alice constantly hounds Dave into doing things he doesn’t want to and gets upset when he doesn’t go along with her ideas. Not all of the problems with the relationship are Alice’s fault though, most of the problems could have been prevented if the Dave had an ounce of will power and self pride but if that was the case the movie would have only been 20 minutes long as he would have booted her out of the flat. Instead of standing up to Alice, Dave spends his time getting frustrated with their relationship and using his almost super human powers of passive aggression to deal with the situation.
The setting of the movie is a London flat that the characters both live in. The flat itself is run down and has paint and plaster pieces falling off the wall which is an important feature for any independent love story. The flat is too small which gives the entire movie a cramped feeling and ensures that the main characters can’t escape each other no matter how much they want to. The entire flat is used in the production of the “film” including emotional scenes in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and even the living room. This setting stinks; can’t the characters at least go out once in their relationship so the viewer isn’t stuck watching the characters mindlessly complain in the house for most of the movie?
Amber Sealey and Anton Saunders played their roles extremely well and after seeing this movie I don’t think I could picture them as anything other than their characters. During the entire movie I didn’t question how genuine either character was which was quite an amazing feat. Both Amber and Anton could indeed have a successful career as actors. The problem with being convincing was that they played characters that I didn’t care about and was extremely disgusted by that there was no way that I could enjoy the quality of their performance.
As I think back, I’m still at a loss to what A+D was actually about. I’d like to say that it’s a social commentary about how men and women secretly hate each other but I know that isn’t the greater meaning behind the film. The movie could be about the differences between male and female communication and the way it affects relationships but I doubt that’s it either. Maybe it’s just a sadistic creation meant to cause the viewer of the movie pain. Well whatever the movie is about it is imperative that the viewer must enjoy being tortured by the emotional drivel that most people wouldn’t put up with in real life.
A+D is like watching a slow motion train wreck and not in a good way. This is a train wreck where the passengers know it’s going to happen an hour and fifteen minutes before the crash. In a desperate attempt to stop the train the conductor tries to hit the brakes but for some reason they don’t work and just make an annoying high pitched squealing noise as the train passive aggressively makes is way down the tracks. Once the train finally hits the little pink artsy Vespa that’s been carelessly left on the tracks it gracefully nudges it, leaving a small dent over the flower decals before it stops. Even the train wreck was a failure. There is nothing redeeming about the story and writing of this movie. The actors portrayed their characters well but it could never make up for the utter rubbish that is presented in the story as the acting is completely overshadowed by the sheer disgust that I had for the characters. The only thing that saved me from slitting my wrists during the movie was that I had other things I could do while it played.