Sweetie, You Won’t Believe It is an export from Kazakhstan playing at the Fantasia Film Festival that will have audiences feeling a number of emotions. It is tense, funny, and scary – sometimes in the same scene. The genre defying film somehow manages to bring everything together in one entertaining ball of frentic fun.
Dastan and his pregnant wife Zhanna are constantly arguing. The pressure of their impending first child has clearly gotten to them. Dastan decides he is going to spend one day with his friends fishing. None of them may know how to do it, but at least it gives him some time to cool down. As it turns out, their lack of fishing knowledge is the least of their problems.
There is a lot going on in Sweetie, You Won’t Believe It (this may partially be the result of having six writers work on the script). A movie with that many writers plus a plot that deals with relationships, gangsters, and masculinity seems destined to lose its audience. Yet, this never comes close to happening.
To begin with, all of the characters are excellently crafted. When a story has a lot to follow, there is the constant danger of someone getting short shrift. They get relegated to the background and are lucky to pop up occasionally. Sweetie, You Won’t Believe It does not necessarily give everyone equal time, but it also does not have to. Each person is given the opportunity to develop their character and leave an impression.
This means audiences are able to concentrate on the outrageous plot. Sweetie, You Won’t Believe It has some dark and bloody moments, but it never loses its sense of fun. Its constant chaotic nature can get a little too wild at times, but the closing moments show that through it all, the movie also has a lot of heart.
The Fantasia Film Festival takes place in person and online from August 5 – August 25
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