Nine Days – Life Is Worth Living

REVIEW
by Sandra Kuznetsova
02.11.2020
The 15th AMFEST*Fall (American film festival) continues and on the sixth day of the festival, Edson Ode's debut feature film Nine Days (2020) was presented to our attention.
Edson Oda is an American director with Japanese origin, but he was born and raised in Brazil. Starting his career in advertising, Edson collected awards in the major international festivals including Gold Lion and three Bronze Lions in Cannes International Creativity Festival as well as many other awards for his short films. You can view them here.

In the Nine days, which by the way was not only directed, but also written by Ode, the topic of moral choices and different approaches to life is raised. How should you live? Is kindness a weakness? Does being strong and successful mean being tough? Edson explores these questions through the metaphor of fiction.
Somewhere in the middle of nowhere there is a house stuck in the 20th century. Will (Winston Duke), the resident of the house, is a kind of guardian angel responsible for human souls. He sends them to live in human incarnation. On the screens of tube TVs, he watches their lives, writes everything on cassettes, writes notes and keeps archives. Nothing bodes the ill, but one of his wards, his pride, dies under strange circumstances. Was it suicide and, if so, what did he overlook? Why did he send a soul that hadn't coped with life? Did he make the wrong choice? He doubts if his previous approach of choosing souls was correct. He tried to choose the kindhearted ones, but maybe it wasn't right?

And now he has to interview applicants for a new birth...

The film, however, does not provide clear answers about which of the two lines of behavior is correct. Everyone decides for themselves. There can't be a right answer, actually. But the fact that overly kind people often fail to cope with the cruelty of life is a sad truth. The author of the article has repeatedly witnessed such situations and can say that, in this case, the task of the "strong" person is to protect the "weak" one. Because what would the world be like if there were no kindness in it?

There's one thing the film does brilliantly: a reminder of the beauty of life. The sensations received by the senses are a large part of the pleasure of living. Walking on sand. Touching the water. Hearing the surf. Wearing a soft sweater. Riding a bike and feeling the air flow. Eating a peach. Yelling at the top of your lungs. Kisses. Gentle touches. Communication. The taste of the food. Music. Millions and billions of reasons to live. Many of the moments carefully collected by Edson are intended to remind us of all those things that we take for granted, without seeing their value.

The film is characterized by sharp transitions between frames, it consists of a puzzle. Therefore, it is very dynamic. Two hours (the ideal duration) fly by completely unnoticed, and there is no feeling of understatement. The end comes unexpectedly, but a second before you realize: "This is how this movie should end".

The story is so spine-tingling and moving, that you'd better stock up on handkerchiefs. To be honest, this is the first film that brought the author of the article to tears. The warm entourage of the 20th century and profound violin music add a sensitivity and tenderness to the film.

The cast of the film is racially and gender diverse, Edson managed to gather a lot of different people. Starring black actor Winston Duke, German-American actress Zazie Beetz, everyone's favorite Bill Skarsgard and actor of Asian descent Benedict Wong. And this is without counting many minor roles.
Nine days, which won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the national American independent film festival Sundance, is based on the true story of Oda's uncle who committed suicide. However, this is not only a call to those who do not want to live. This film is intended to remind you how wonderful our world is, that it is full of pleasure and good things, you just need to see them. So life is definitely worth living and enjoying it.
 
Nine Days – Life Is Worth Living
REVIEW
by Sandra Kuznetsova
02.11.2020
The 15th AMFEST*Fall (American film festival) continues and on the sixth day of the festival, Edson Ode's debut feature film Nine Days (2020) was presented to our attention.
Edson Oda is an American director with Japanese origin, but he was born and raised in Brazil. Starting his career in advertising, Edson collected awards in the major international festivals including Gold Lion and three Bronze Lions in Cannes International Creativity Festival as well as many other awards for his short films. You can view them here.

In the Nine days, which by the way was not only directed, but also written by Ode, the topic of moral choices and different approaches to life is raised. How should you live? Is kindness a weakness? Does being strong and successful mean being tough? Edson explores these questions through the metaphor of fiction.
Somewhere in the middle of nowhere there is a house stuck in the 20th century. Will (Winston Duke), the resident of the house, is a kind of guardian angel responsible for human souls. He sends them to live in human incarnation. On the screens of tube TVs, he watches their lives, writes everything on cassettes, writes notes and keeps archives. Nothing bodes the ill, but one of his wards, his pride, dies under strange circumstances. Was it suicide and, if so, what did he overlook? Why did he send a soul that hadn't coped with life? Did he make the wrong choice? He doubts if his previous approach of choosing souls was correct. He tried to choose the kindhearted ones, but maybe it wasn't right?

And now he has to interview applicants for a new birth...

The film, however, does not provide clear answers about which of the two lines of behavior is correct. Everyone decides for themselves. There can't be a right answer, actually. But the fact that overly kind people often fail to cope with the cruelty of life is a sad truth. The author of the article has repeatedly witnessed such situations and can say that, in this case, the task of the "strong" person is to protect the "weak" one. Because what would the world be like if there were no kindness in it?
There's one thing the film does brilliantly: a reminder of the beauty of life. The sensations received by the senses are a large part of the pleasure of living. Walking on sand. Touching the water. Hearing the surf. Wearing a soft sweater. Riding a bike and feeling the air flow. Eating a peach. Yelling at the top of your lungs. Kisses. Gentle touches. Communication. The taste of the food. Music. Millions and billions of reasons to live. Many of the moments carefully collected by Edson are intended to remind us of all those things that we take for granted, without seeing their value.

The film is characterized by sharp transitions between frames, it consists of a puzzle. Therefore, it is very dynamic. Two hours (the ideal duration) fly by completely unnoticed, and there is no feeling of understatement. The end comes unexpectedly, but a second before you realize: "This is how this movie should end".

The story is so spine-tingling and moving, that you'd better stock up on handkerchiefs. To be honest, this is the first film that brought the author of the article to tears. The warm entourage of the 20th century and profound violin music add a sensitivity and tenderness to the film.

The cast of the film is racially and gender diverse, Edson managed to gather a lot of different people. Starring black actor Winston Duke, German-American actress Zazie Beetz, everyone's favorite Bill Skarsgard and actor of Asian descent Benedict Wong. And this is without counting many minor roles.
Nine days, which won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the national American independent film festival Sundance, is based on the true story of Oda's uncle who committed suicide. However, this is not only a call to those who do not want to live. This film is intended to remind you how wonderful our world is, that it is full of pleasure and good things, you just need to see them. So life is definitely worth living and enjoying it.
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