Immigration has been a hot button topic in America for years. Despite the arguments conversations about the issue inevitably lead to, the subject has been tackled in a number of films. Quite simply, it is rife with storytelling possibilities. Gets Good Light was a short film that was scheduled to screen at the cancelled Tribeca Film Festival. The film is about the treatment of immigrants in the United States. A luxury condo masquerades as an open house during the day. At night, it houses secrets.
The film sets an apprehensive atmosphere. Initially, it is unclear what the problem is, but there is a definite sense of unease. Even though people act naturally, it is forced and tinged with worry. The audience is immediately trying to figure out what is going on. In the film’s climactic scene, it is learned why no one is completely at ease. It is clear that only certain people are welcome in the country. Gets Good Light gets this message across in a singular situation. It is unclear whether this is a country wide problem or whether it is isolated to one location.
This is the biggest problem with Gets Good Light. It is taking on a very large problem in a very confined space. The methodically paced movie does not allow enough time for the issue to be adequately visited. The performances are great and director Alejadra Parody does some excellent work behind the camera. Ultimately, it just seems like there is not enough. This is most evident in the abrupt ending.
Even the most critically lauded movies about immigration can be a difficult sell to a mass audience. The filmmaker is asking the audience to revisit a topic they may already find unbearable or difficult. Gets Good Light takes on the subject in an intimate film. The tone will lack a sense of urgency to some, but the writing is engaging.