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#TIFF19 Review: Anne at 13,000 ft (Platform)

September 9, 2019

By John Corrado

★★ (out of 4)

The third feature from Toronto filmmaker Kazik Radwanski, Anne at 13,000 ft is shot in his usual minimalistic style, offering a gritty and stripped down portrait of its title character, who is in the throes of a mental breakdown. Anne (Deragh Campbell) is in her late twenties and works at a Toronto daycare centre. She is incompetent and neglectful in her job, getting support from her friend and colleague Sarah (Dorothea Paas), but receiving constant corrections from her supervisors, which she can barely handle and takes as unjust criticism. She meets a man named Matt (played by local filmmaker Matt Johnson) at Sarah’s wedding and they start dating, but Anne also takes delight in embarrassing him and making him uncomfortable.

The title of Anne at 13,000 ft comes from the character’s newfound obsession with skydiving, with a subplot involving her training to be able to do solo jumps. The film mainly unfolds through tight, shaky closeups, giving it a very rough feel at times, which makes it somewhat dizzying to watch. Unfolding through a lot of improvised scenes, the social awkwardness that the film captures feels real, which is the entire point of the piece. But with little context or backstory given as to why Anne is acting this way, the character becomes somewhat insufferable to watch, even at a scant 75 minutes. While Anne at 13,000 ft is carried by a good performance from Campbell, who fully commits herself to the role, it’s also one of those films that I can’t really say that I enjoyed watching or really liked that much overall.

Deragh Campbell in Anne at 13,000 ft

Public Screenings:

Monday, September 9th – 6:45 PM at TIFF Bell Lightbox 1

Saturday, September 14th – 7:00 PM at TIFF Bell Lightbox 2

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