I Love You To DeathMovies — By Chris Hlad on March 2, 2012 at 7:38 pm
By Chris Hlad
I truly believe that Los Angeles is the city of opportunities. I also believe there is nowhere better to live if you like movies (there is a reason Hollywood is the Mecca of the Entertainment Industry). This past weekend (Oscar Weekend – a literal holiday to some) proves my point, as I was randomly provided the opportunity to see a first showing of a film called “I Love You to Death”. I’m confident that a lot of other people are going to be seeing this movie too, but in a town where bragging rights are everything, I got to see it first! Now, I don’t believe in spoilers, but I do believe in giving people reasons why they should either a. see a movie or b. say they just contracted a contagious disease in order to un-awkwardly bow out of an invitation. That being said, “I Love You to Death” is a film that you really should see, especially if you’re a fan of the Horror genre. Hell, if you’re a fan of good movies, you should see this film.
The movie focuses on its two main characters, Clay and Lily (affectionately called ‘Carrot’ by her dotting husband) Foster, who are, for lack of a better term, in a unique circumstance (let’s just say one is a little livelier than the other). How they ended up this way is the crux of the film, which you will have to see for yourself, because I’m not going to tell you about it. I’m also not going to tell you how it ends. What I will tell you is why this movie works.
“I Love You to Death” has, in my opinion, what makes or breaks a movie: atmosphere. Aside from one scene that takes place on another plane of existence entirely, the majority of this film occurs in the couples’ home. Yes, we’ve all seen films that take place in one central location, but in the hands of writer and director Lloyd Lee Barnett, the home is as much a character in the film as are its stars. It’s beautifully decorated and beautifully creepy. It isn’t poorly lit but the lighting is eerily off. It’s spacious enough but feels as claustrophobic as a coffin. When the film ended, I just wanted to be outdoors, where I could breathe again!
But the atmosphere doesn’t stop with the set design. The whole film has a sort of romantic air to it, but in a very Edgar Allan Poe-ish way. For example, dancing is a recurring movement in the film, but it’s a dance that would be choreographed by somebody like the Phantom of the Opera.
There are scenes in this movie that won’t be leaving my head any time soon, and I’m okay with that because these scenes aren’t cheap exploitative schlock that you want to get out of your head immediately. The phantasmagoric is frightening, yes, but in the hands of Lloyd Lee Barnett, it is hypnotically beautiful.
Just don’t forget that I was relieved to be back in the real world after living in a coffin for an hour and a half. Oh, and I’ll probably never look at a dinner party the same way again.
For more information visit www.deathdouspart.net.