WATCHBOX FIRST FIVE: ARMLESS

From Watchbox Staffer Laura Z

Come on, you know that you judge a film on its first five minutes. We all know right away if we are going to enjoy the next 90 minutes of a film. Some might even argue that the first five minutes of a film are the most important. 

With this in mind, The Watchbox is now offering FIRST FIVE reviews, where we take a nice long, hard look at the first five minutes of films on The Watchbox and share our thoughts with The Watchbox audience. Enjoy!

The first five minutes of ARMLESS doesn’t get you completely out of the credit sequence, but they tell you several things about the two main characters who are introduced in spurts abruptly interspersed with the credits themselves.

We learn:

1) These people have an answering machine. Who the hell has an answering machine these days? Do they live in Idaho? Why do I feel like people living in Idaho would still have answering machines? I don’t know. Maybe it’s like how in Japan, 59% of households still have a fax machine. Some places just have delayed tech, I suppose.

2) And there’s still more delayed tech in that the female lead after listening to the alarming answering machine message that the male lead left for her, ran upstairs, ran through several doors to find…a cordless phone!! Again, who are these people?! What era do they live in? Maybe it’s the 80s? But it can’t be, because she uses the cordless phone to call the male lead’s modern looking cell phone, so we’re at least in the 90s? Maybe we’re definitely in the 90s, because people were still transitioning from cordless or wireless phones to cell phones? I don’t know. This troubles me.

3) The only other clue I got during the first five minutes as to what time period this story takes place in is that music cuts in and out statically with the characters, which sounds pretty 80s but could definitely fit into the early 90s. It’s bizarre. Sort of like Drive, where the music really made that film according to one of the actors in the film, whom I completely agree with. At least that’s my impression so far.

4) This woman and man in this film live together in a house, she knows his moods, she cares about him. He has issues. Serious issues. She’s friends with his mother.

This film’s first five are really interesting, set the tone for the film already, bizarre, bizarre, and more bizarre, which I personally like, so I will watch this. Plus I don’t see many American indie films directed by someone with an Arabic last name, so that is interesting to note as well.

You can check out Armless on Watchbox here.

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