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giants being lonely

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‘Giants Being Lonely’ review: Gorgeous film about growing up swings for the fences

A swing and a miss?

Giants Being Lonely is a coming of age drama with feeling. The film follows Bobby (Jack Irving) and Adam (Ben Irving) during their senior year of high school. The story will live up to many expectations of the genre, but there is also an unexpected sensitivity. Is going all in on ambience at the expense of character work when telling a story about growing up, however?

Director Grear Patterson’s feature directorial debut is an atmospheric look at youth. Giants Being Lonely captures the mood of being a teenager heading into adulthood. Everyone seems to be walled off from others even in the most intimate situations. It is a familiar theme in the genre that is explored a little differently. The script cares less about the angst and hints at the loneliness of all its characters.

Therein lies the most glaring issue with Giants Being Lonely. It is constantly scratching the surface, but is unwilling (or unable) to go any deeper. This leads to plenty of potentially interesting characters yet none that actually are. The exception are the scenes involving the baseball team. It is in these moments the movie is more than just stunning to look at.

The same can be said about the plot. It covers many of the expected themes. Sex, abuse, and identity are all a part of Giants Being Lonely. This is all part of a sometimes soap opera-like plot that includes extramarital affairs, multiple love triangles, and alcoholism. It is too much to be addressed adequately in a film that goes less than an hour and a half.

This may all be an intentional artistic choice by Patterson. Giants Being Lonely places a huge emphasis on the cinematography. There is a dreamlike quality throughout the entire film. It is distractingly beautiful at times and constantly invokes a sense of timeless nostalgia. Everything culminates in an ending that describes the movie perfectly. The characters attend a house party that will bring back memories to the audience, but will ultimately fail to connect.

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