Film Review: “Coherence” (2013)
Written and Directed by: James Ward Byrkit
Produced by: Lene Bausager, Doug Blake, Alyssa Byrkit
Cinematography by: Nic Sadler
Cast: Emily Baldoni, Maury Sterling, Nicholas Brendon, Elizabeth Gracen, Alex Manugian, Lauren Maher, Hugo Armstrong, Lorene Scafaria
A group of close friends gather for a dinner party. But, before they even get a chance to start enjoying each other’s company, strange and unexplainable events begin to occur, because the comet, named Miller, is passing overhead. However, all the bizarre things happening are nothing in comparison to what the friends start suffering- heavy paranoia, where each of them believes that the one standing next to them is their double. As a result, doubt, dread, and a desire to make it through the night, will be their only companions on their way to an unpredictable ending…
How many writers, right now, can write a kind of insanely complicated, chaotic and totally out-of-control story like Coherence? I think only one person could come up with such an interesting, unique, and intelligently written story like this- James Ward Byrkit, who also stands behind the camera to direct his first really successful featured film.
Everything about Coherence is almost perfect. Mostly because of Byrkit`s story. He manages to write a script in a way that every single character in the film seems to be the main character, and all are equally involved in these very odd events, which makes each of them paranoid. There are so many scenes in Coherence I would love to highlight; each one, like the other, involves everyone in the film. The camera carefully moves from one character to another, showing their frustration, confusion, and struggle, while they talk and discuss The Miller Comet that has passed overhead; or the phone that is broken; or the reason why the landline remains unresponsive.
Byrkit masterfully wrote and orchestrated the entire film so well, that it doesn’t allow the audience to get even a bit distracted; otherwise, you would have to watch it again. One of the scenes I enjoyed watching was when Emily (Emily Baldoni) and her boyfriend Kevin (Maury Sterling) are discussing Kevin`s ex-girlfriend, Laurie (Lauren Maher), who, when she appears makes things somewhat tense for both Kevin and Emily. In every single scene the camera captures everyone`s facial expression, which makes the entire story unbelievably real.
Coherence is certainly one of the most surprising and highly anticipated films of the year, with a highly intelligent story, and talented cast, who does an incredible job of performing in such a difficult story line. In this film, several strange and bizarre occurrences will lead all of the friends to the conclusion that they`re in intersecting, parallel universes, like the one we see on ABC`s ‘FRINGE’, but instead of parallel dinner parties, there are unfriendly and dangerous doubles. For those who love to see different versions of reality, and how they can interchange with each other, then ‘Coherence’ is certainly the right film to watch.