Thursday, December 8, 2011

Must See Movies –The High Cost of Living, Starring Zach Braff (Review)



What do you do when the best and the worst moments of your life happen at the exact same time? Director and screenwriter Deborah Chow explores these questions and the darker side of love in her award-winning feature film debut, THE HIGH COST OF LIVING, starring Zach Braff (Scrubs, Garden State) and Isabelle Blais (Human Trafficking).

Henry (Braff) is an American drug dealer living in Montreal and not a particularly nice guy. Nathalie (Blais) is a beautiful young woman, married, and about to have her first child. One night, Henry makes a wrong turn and their lives tragically collide—literally, they are involved in a car crash. As Nathalie’s life unravels, Henry becomes her unlikely guardian angel, bringing some much-needed calm in the storm of her life. She finds a welcome relief in the rumpled stranger who seems only too willing to offer her refuge.

But Henry has his own problems. His past misdeeds are catching up to him and he soon discovers that he is no longer able to hide from his past or his present. The inevitable impact of his choices forces both Henry and Nathalie to confront loss, love and life, and ultimately to decide whether the high cost of living is worth it.

When Chow’s film debuted at the 2010 Toronto Film Festival, it won the TIFF/SKYY Vodka Award for Best First Canadian Feature, followed by the Best Screenplay Award for a 1st or 2nd Feature at the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois. THE HIGH COST OF LIVING played in select theaters nationally.

THE HIGH COST OF LIVING is produced by Kimberley Berlin and Susan Schneir. Director of Photography, Claudine Sauvé; Production Designer, Susan MacQuarrie; Editors Jonathan Alberts and Benjamin Duffield; Music, Normand Corbeil; Sound, Bruno Pucella; Executive Producers, Heidi Levitt and Walter Klimkiw.

Pricing: $26.95US
Runtime: 98 min + extras
Rating: NR
Catalog #: NNVG248360
Language: English and French, with English subtitles
Color: Color
Audio Format: Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo
Genre: Drama
Bonus:  An Interview with Zach Braff, presented by American Express


My Thoughts:

This is a very powerful movie, and the cast does an excellent job in delivering an emotional performance.  The two main characters meet as a result of bad luck, and in seconds, both their lives are changed for good. In an instant, a pregnant woman loses her baby due to the reckless driving of Henry, played by Zach Braff.  After the incident, they are reunited as Nathalie's live is spiraling downward.  With no place to do, Henry takes her in, not telling her that he caused all her misfortunes. 

This film then follows these characters as they confront love, loss and life.  And, in the end they have to decide confront their inner demons and that fateful night in order to move on.

Overall, this was a wonderful and very thought-provoking film, based around lies and tragedy.

Disclosure:  I was sent a copy of this DVD in order to write up an honest review.  The views above are mine and mine alone.

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