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Greenpoint Film Festival: ‘Go/Don’t Go’ review: A colorful map into a lonely life

A familiar premise is given an interesting overhaul.

Every few years will see another entry in the last person in the world genre. This invariably leads to the question of whether they are truly alone. Clues hint to more people and there is usually a major threat that needs to be dealt with.  Go/Don’t Go is a different entry. Adam (Alex Knapp) does seem to be alone in the world. But what world is he in? And is it a bad thing?

Adam lives his life based on routine. He wakes up the same time every morning, puts letters in the mailbox, and walks through the neighborhood exploring houses. There is a serenity to what he is doing that borders on enjoyment. Knapp, who also directed the film, does a great job of building an atmosphere to Go/Don’t Go. Some shots are repeated to show the sameness in Adam’s life. But the movie has more elements of mystery than films of this ilk tend to.

There are flashbacks to Adam’s life interspersed throughout the movie. His relationship with a woman known only as K come back to him often. She is a connection to his previous world. In a nice touch, Go/Don’t Go never makes it clear if that is a good thing. Therein lies the beauty of the story. Early on, some insight is shed into Adam that becomes a constant question in Go/Don’t Go. Adam is certainly alone, but how much does he have to do with it?

A familiar premise is given an interesting overhaul.

The movie makes good use of sound. There are long moments of silence that highlight Adam’s more reflective moments. Occasionally, Knapp will include sudden loud jolts to keep the audience off balance. It ensures the contemplative movie constantly remains engaging. Adam is a very interesting character. He does not speak very much and when he does, he gives very short answers. His demeanor adds to the mystery of Go/Don’t Go.

How much a person likes the movie depends on what they want from this type of film. Those who want a typical post-apocalyptic story will be disappointed. There are no mutants and the struggle to survive is not the focal point here. Go/Don’t Go is a contemplative tale that is more about coming to terms with oneself than other people.

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