Jakob Bilinski, Scott Ganyo
Scott Ganyo, Jen Lilley, Luca Ellis, Rosalind Rubin
Nothing lasts forever.
After suffering the tragic loss of his wife, Nick (Scott Ganyo) embarks on an obsessive and dangerous journey to uncover the truth about her passing.
The latest short film from Indiana's own Jakob Bilinski, Obsolescence continues Bilinski's tradition of producing high quality low-budget flicks that challenge a viewer by teasing the mind and taunting the heart. Intended both as a stand-alone short and as a potential precursor to a web or TV serial, Obsolescence was shot at a breakneck pace over the course of two days. While this could work against the film given the film's multiple layers of thought and action, with Bilinski at the helm it actually seems to give the film a sense of urgency and anxiety that heightens the drama tremendously. Scripted by Bilinski and co-star/co-producer Scott Ganyo based upon a story idea by Bilinski's wife Mackenzie, Obsolescence is intriguing both as a character drama and for the remarkable story that unfolds over the course of a mere 26-minute run time.
Filmed in Los Angeles, a bit of a rarity for the Indiana native, Bilinski seems to have tapped into the haunting yet humane spirit of a David Lynch film by creating a film that works equally well on multiple layers and stimulates the heart as well as the mind.
Obsolescence is the second film of Bilinski's reviewed by The Independent Critic, and it's becoming abundantly clear that Bilinski is a filmmaker with a unique vision that he's managed to learn how to fit within the confines of a low-budget indie project. As well, Bilinski clearly has an eye for identifying quality actors and actresses whose commitment doesn't necessarily depend on the big paydays. The ensemble cast that comprises Obsolescence is strong across the board, a rarity among low-budget indies.
As Nick, Scott Ganyo is strongest in his character's more vulnerable and intimately dramatic moments of grief and despair. Ganyo's scenes with Jen Lilley, who is simply extraordinary here, are quite memorable and you get the sense these two could easily pull off a romantic drama together. Luca Ellis, a singer making his acting debut, is appropriately smarmy and rather disturbing and should see some additional work coming his way after his turn here. Rosalind Rubin (12 Rounds) opens the film with what could easily have been a throwaway cliche'd scene, but Rubin takes it and hits a home run.
Bilinski's camera work is rock solid throughout Obsolescence, with opening and closing shots that will stay with you long after the closing credits roll by. The film is complemented by Christopher John De Mory's stellar original music, which manages to intertwine both the intimacy of the lost relationship with the film's more thought-provoking elements.
While Jakob Bilinski's filmmaking career may not last forever, I have a feeling this is one guy we'll be hearing about for years to come.