1. What was with those two friends of the main character? Are lines of dialogue that sound like they might have been plagiarized from an old Gomer Pyle television series episode now considered to be hip and funny?
2. What was with that little know-it-all sister? I think if there had been one more cute little scene with her in it, I would have had to leave the theater to go purchase a barf bag.
3. What was with that annoying calender that kept popping up on the screen every 13 seconds or so informing me about what day in the 500 day story I was currently watching? I guess this director had so little confidence in the sophistication of his audience that he thought we would all be hopelessly confused by the nonlinear plot unless he inserted a cheat sheet calender number in front of almost every scene. I guess Paint-by-number has been a great boon for individuals who want to paint a picture but have no talent for doing so. But please, do we really need a similar Scene-by-number technique of film producing?
4. When a trick pony does two or three tricks, it can generate delightful applause from an audience. But if the pony continues to do trick after trick after trick, at some point the applause starts to become motivated more by politeness than appreciation for the show. And if the pony continues until it does one trick too many, all of the positive feeling that was initially generated can turn sour. That is a lesson this director needs to learn. I think he used every cinematic technique ever invented (split screens, voice over narration, nonlinear sequencing, a dance number in the middle of the film … the list goes on and on and on). An auteur is able to get by with a handful of techniques, those that are appropriate for the film being produced, and the techniques that are used are often so subtle that they are not even noticed by the audience except after careful analysis. A less skilful director can easily fall into the trap of confusing quantity with quality, and like the trick pony, end up doing one trick too many.
5. The term “Kludge” derives from computer programming, and is defined as a clumsy or inelegant solution to a problem. I can not think of a more apt term to describe the ending of this film. The screenwriter/director spend most of the film setting up the audience to have a certain expectation about how the story will end. Then they want to surprise us at the end with an ending quite different from what was expected. This sets up a problem. How do the screenwriter/director demonstrate to the audience that there were clues all the way through the film that would have allowed the correct ending to be deduced if one had watched the film carefully? There are many potentially elegant solutions to this problem that the director/screenwriter could have employed. Unfortunately, the method chosen was a kludge of the worst kind.
I rated this film 2 out of 5 stars.