Edward Boon, Leila Sykes, Jamie Fowler
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
"All's Well" Takes a Look at Life After War
Joe (Edward Boon) is adjusting to civilian life after his final sting in Afghanistan in writer/director Christian Kinde's nearly thirteen-minute short film All's Well, an intelligent and timely look at life for soldiers after the righting is done. For Joe, he's returning to an empty home, a sick mother, and a girlfriend (Leila Sykes) who doesn't love him anymore.
Can Joe accept life as it is now and simply move forward?
It is an often asked question in a world that has been mired in a seemingly endless series of wars globally over the past few years as soldiers return from their battles with wounds both emotional and physical to a civilian world that can't possibly understand. While it would be nearly impossible to truly tackle the complexities of the entire issue within the span of a short 13-minute film, Kinde's film does nicely cover the challenges of this one man whose battles, at least in some ways, continue even after he's returned home.
Joe is played with a sort of complex ambiguity by Edward Boon, sort of an "every soldier" portrayal that makes you feel like he's manifesting an experience that is far too familiar. As the girlfriend who has already moved on, Leila Sykes manifests a performance that has likely been played out in real life in veterans' homes around the world over the past few years.
All's Well doesn't necessarily cover any new ground, but it does humanize the harsh reality faced by those who leave to serve their country only to return to a country that has moved on without them. The film's lensing by Yana Rits is emotionally resonant with excellent use of shadows, both real and imagined. Poppy Bell's art direction gives the film a look and feel that seems to mirror the inner personal experience of the returning soldier.
Only recently finished, All's Well is getting ready to hit the indie fest circuit and should find open arms among fests with its socially aware and incredibly relevant subject and story.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic