DVD Review: AMERICAN FABLE

AMERICAN FABLE was written and directed by Anne Hamilton and stars Peyton Kennedy, Richard Schiff, Kip Pardue, Marci Miller, Gavin MacIntosh and Zuleikha Robinson.

A dark, dreamlike mystery plays out amidst the expansive farmlands of the American Midwest in this wondrous, storybook thriller. With her family’s livelihood imperiled by the farm crisis of the 1980s, eleven-year-old Gitty (Peyton Kennedy) loses herself in a world of fantasy and make believe. But she stumbles into her own fairytale when she makes a startling discovery: a well-dressed mystery man (Richard Schiff) being held captive in her family’s silo. It’s the beginning of a labyrinthine journey that will turn Gitty’s world upside down and force her to question her loyalty to her own family. The feature debut from director Anne Hamilton unleashes a torrent of gorgeous, stunningly surreal images as it immerses viewers in a child’s imagination.

The story for American Fable centers around the free spirited Gitty whose imagination is full of fantasy and wonder. When she discovers and befriends the mystery man who is trapped in the silo, this is where Gitty’s reality begins to mash with fantasy. She shares time with the man who tells her stories in return for a few kind gestures. As the two get to know each other much better, Gitty’s curiosity gets the best of her as she discovers the shocking reason as to why the man is being held captive inside the silo. Her world gets turned upside down and Gitty’s loyalty to her own family is questioned as she has to pick a side between them and the mystery man in the silo. Needless to say, it’s a tough spot for a kid her age to be stuck in and she handles it all the best way she can and that’s through her imagination.

There’s a lot of good and very little bad about this directorial debut from Anne Hamilton. Keep Anne Hamilton on your radar because for this to be her first movie she did a great job. Even though it wasn’t quite what I thought it was going to be, the movie was still a good watch and it might be one of those that some viewers have to give a second chance. All of the acting was really good and it was fun watching Peyton Kennedy and Richard Schiff’s interesting characters go back and forth in the movie. You can’t help but like Peyton Kennedy’s character Gitty who is the epitome of innocence and Richard Schiff’s mysterious character who you don’t know if he’s good or bad until the end. These two characters strike up an odd friendship that’s just so interesting and entertaining to watch. Oh yeah, the character played by Gavin MacIntosh was one of the best antagonists to come along in a while. This character is so vile and unlikable that you’ll love to hate him.

The front of the packaging features the artwork you see at the top of the page and the back features movie details, some images and list of special features. The DVD disc also featuers matching artwork. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this standard-definition release were really good. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio.

Bottom line is, I went into American Fable thinking it was going to be something similar to Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz or even Pan’s Labyrinth but it was much more of a grounded watch. As kids, we all have some wild imaginations so I guess that’s where Gitty’s dreams sequences come into play because none of them really connect to the story. Young Gitty and her innocence is the main factor because she doesn’t know if the man in the silo is dangerous or not or if he’s even telling her the truth. He’s promising her all kinds of good stuff but is he doing this for his own benefit or is he on the up and up? I think between that and finding out what could happen to her family’s farm is what triggers the fantasy segments that only a child’s imagination could create and Anne Hamilton is able to capture this. The story was good, the characters were all interesting and even the rural location was spot on for a gothic thriller like this. There’s also some beautiful cinematography in the movie. American Fable will be available on DVD on July 11th and is worth checking out.

Distributor: IFC Midnight

Run Time: 96 Minutes

Rated: Not Rated

DVD Video: Widescreen (2.40:1)

DVD Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles: English and Spanish

Special Features:

  • Deleted Scenes
  • Behind-the-Scenes Stills Gallery
  • Trailer

 

 

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