Rating: ★★★★☆ (4/5)
“Shapeless,” directed by Samantha Aldana, is a captivating and thought-provoking film that takes the audience on an intimate exploration of self-discovery, body image, and inner demons. With its raw and emotionally charged storytelling, this movie leaves a lasting impact, challenging societal norms and exposing the fragility of our perceptions.
From the very first frame, “Shapeless” engulfs you in its dark and haunting atmosphere. The film revolves around Ivy (played by Kelly Murtagh), who battles with body dysmorphia; an affliction that distorts her perception of herself. As she journeys through her struggles, we witness the profound effects her distorted self-image has on both her personal relationships and her quest for self-acceptance.
The acting performances in “Shapeless” are nothing short of remarkable. Kelly Murtagh delivers a deeply nuanced portrayal of Ivy’s complex character, exuding vulnerability and internal conflict. Her depiction powerfully conveys the anguish and confusion experienced by those grappling with body dysmorphia.
Director Samantha Aldana skillfully navigates the delicate balance between realism and surrealism throughout the film. She seamlessly blends dreamlike sequences with gritty realism to represent Ivy’s warped reality. The juxtaposition between these two worlds provides a visceral experience that allows viewers to empathize with Ivy’s internal turmoil.
The score by acclaimed composer Emily Rice perfectly complements the film’s thematic elements. From melancholic melodies to suspenseful crescendos, each musical piece enhances the emotional depth of every scene. The precisely timed cinematography further heightens these emotions by capturing Ivy’s distorted perspective through creative angles and striking visual compositions.
The production design deserves commendation for its meticulous attention to detail in creating an evocative atmosphere that parallels Ivy’s psychological state. From claustrophobic apartment interiors to dimly lit hallways, each setting effectively contributes to the film’s overall mood.
The special effects, predominantly used to illustrate Ivy’s distorted self-perception, are expertly executed. The seamless integration of visual effects into the narrative enhances the portrayal of her inner demons and adds an extra layer of complexity to the story.
While the editing is generally well-paced and enhances the film’s suspenseful moments, there are a few instances where certain scenes drag on unnecessarily. These moments mildly disrupt the otherwise engaging narrative flow.
The dialogues in “Shapeless” are honest and thought-provoking, often delving into uncomfortable truths about body image and mental health. They refrain from being overly didactic, allowing viewers to draw their own conclusions while promoting discussion long after the credits roll.
Ultimately, what truly resonates with me about “Shapeless” is its bold exploration of societal expectations and how they intertwine with personal identity. The film invites viewers on a journey that encourages introspection and empathy for those struggling with body image disorders. It boldly challenges us to question our own perceptions while highlighting the importance of self-acceptance in an unforgiving world.
“Shapeless” is not just another movie; it’s an immersive experience that captivates your senses while leaving a lasting impact on your mind and heart. Samantha Aldana’s directorial debut is a formidable achievement in independent cinema—a testament to how storytelling can be a catalyst for change.
Release : 2021-06-10
Genre : Drama, Horror
Runtime : 88
Home Page :
IMDb Page : https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9154818
Cast : Kelly Murtagh as Ivy, Bobby Gilchrist as Oscar, Jamie Neumann as Addie, Marco Dapper as Dylan, Erika Ashley as Maggie
Tagline: Fear the monster within.
Overview : Out in public, Ivy is a New Orleans lounge singer trying to make a name for herself. When alone, though, she suffers from a terrifying eating disorder. And the more she hides her struggles, the stronger her inner demons become.