SXSW 2019 Review: LEAVE THE BUS THROUGH THE BROKEN WINDOW

By Jan Hamilton

Synopsis Source: SXSW

An American expat arrives in Hong Kong to make a documentary about an international art fair but finds himself out of his depth. He turns the camera on himself and the film becomes a deeply personal and unexpectedly comedic story about authenticity, heartbreak and that time he got lost in a shopping mall.

This is a strange stream of consciousness film. If you just let it take you, you will go a slightly sad, sometimes funny trip. The movie is narrated by an Siri/Alexa type voice with, of course, no emotion. A young melancholy American film maker, (director Andrew Hevia) fresh off an unhappy break-up and an earlier unresolved romance, files from Maine to New York to Hong Kong. His goal is to make a film about an art show, but he knows little Chinese and is not very persistent in his attempts to enlist help. We see the world through the director’s hand held camera, often it is pointed at the ground, we rarely see his face. After some wandering around, he finds an apartment that is 10 feet by 4 feet, with a loft for a bed. He sometimes feels it is a coffin. He makes somewhat aimless attempts to get his documentary going, but it’s mostly useless. He meets a girl, goes to some parties, but his project can’t get off the ground. The humor is subtle, but the feeling of humanity and compassion we get is overwhelming. I just loved this film for all the feelings it brings out in the viewer.

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