Print Edition: May 21, 2014
Spaces and Reservations is a short film written and directed by Brendan Prost about two characters in a long-term relationship who naturally grow apart.
As the plot unfolds, the audience sees Jamie and Kacie fall out of love through subtle nuances and empty dialogue. Spaces and Reservations has tense, awkward silences to represent the hollowness and isolation the characters feel. Prost commented on his experience in film school, saying he was “taught to not write the way people talk — I don’t subscribe to that at all; I prefer to include the messiness.” This is shown in the film; the characters correct themselves, stumble on their word choices, and speak hurriedly, just as one might do in real life. Prost says “dialogue [is just a] carrier for what’s really going on. The words are irrelevant; it doesn’t matter what you say.”
The script is written with the intent to give both characters equal voices. As they grow apart, the symmetry in their experiences is not something one usually finds in a Hollywood archetype. Instead of being written to serve a “purpose,” the characters are fluid and dynamic. Instead of looking for an end result, Prost says the film is “more about the experience of watching it happen.”
Taylor Hastings, the actor who plays Kacie, says that Prost was “so interactive,” spending months exploring the script with her and Zach White, who plays Jamie. As Prost comes from an acting background, their performances are the main focus of the movie. In addition to many different acting exercises, Hastings and White also made arts and crafts to display on set.
When asked about the premiere at the Rio Theatre on Tuesday, May 20, both Hastings and Prost begin to tear up.
Hastings says that the film is “such a huge accomplishment,” coming from over 80 hours of footage recorded over a few weeks, as well as a year and a half of editing the film.
The film techniques are beautifully crafted; the lighting, original score, and shooting style all complement what the film is portraying. In fact, the mechanics of the film are so well done that they go virtually unnoticeable to the viewer. However, the techniques are essential to the viewing experience, and allows the audience is able to focus on the story.
This film represents all relationships, particularly the way anxieties from previous experiences unfold, and seeing how these different anxieties colour people’s behaviour. Spaces and Reservations is a candid look at the way we live through these anxieties.
Spaces and Reservations plays for one more night at the Rio Theatre, May 27 at 6:30 and 9:30 p.m.