The world is slowly going to hell. It's not overpopulation. Or war. Nuclear disaster? Nope. Not even famine. The world is going to hell because people are losing their senses. Smell. Taste. Hearing. Sight. People are losing their connection with the world, and there is nothing they can do to stop it. That's the premise of Perfect Sense, a largely overlooked romantic drama starring Ewan McGregor and Eva Green.
Perfect Sense is sort of like the 2008 sci-fi thriller Blindness, only it's not terrible. In that movie, much of humanity loses their sight to an untreatable illness and society crumbles as a result. Unfortunately, so does the world's humanity and our connection to the main characters. In Perfect Sense, as the senses go, director David Mackenzie narrows in on what makes us human, emphasizing the good, the warmth, the real reasons we want to love other people. It's an odd concept for a romantic drama, but it works: Perfect Sense is one of the most romantic movies of the year.
Eva Green and Ewan McGregor turn in strong performances as two hesitant lovers cast against a decaying world. As fear overtakes those around them, they are drawn closer. Mackenzie is able to tap into their emotional connection and exude it to the audience, amplifying their feelings for one another through visuals and sound, the only two mediums available to him as a filmmaker.
The performances play second fiddle to Mackenzie's direction. Perfect Sense is nearly dreamlike at times, beautifully crafted and at times mesmerizing. Some of the best moments come when Mackenzie tears the sense of sound not only from his characters but the audience as well, casting his film into several long minutes of silence. It is in these scenes where Perfect Sense resonates the most.
Perfect Sense isn't for everyone. It occasionally becomes too metaphorical for its own good, and those seeking a straightforward romantic drama have best look elsewhere. But Perfect Sense is one of the more romantic movies of the year, and most captivating.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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