Review: Fishbowl

Title: Fishbowl
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Directors: Alexa Kinigopoulos, Stephen Kinigopoulos
Starring: Rick Kain, Caroline Coleman, Emily Peachey
Runtime: 1 hr 28 mins

What It Is: During the late 90s and in a small town where either you talk or you’re talked about, three sisters cope with the loss of their mother and deal with their father who believes the world is coming to an imminent end. Having to deal with religious imposition and punishments set by their struggling father, the three girls cling to any normalcies of life they can and stick together. Over time they try to sort out their own spirituality and figure out for themselves whether or not they think the end of the world really is upon them.     

What We Think: This movie has a surreal, dreamlike quality about it that’s a large factor in whether or not someone is going to like it. With sparse dialogue, the acting has to be good and while there aren’t any terrible performances, I’m certainly not left wondering why none of the actors have yet to make it big. The story isn’t anything overtly special nor is it taken in any surprising directions. The film’s definitely hard to watch at times and that wouldn’t be the case if I hadn’t been invested to at least some degree. I truly wanted to know what happened and hoped there would be something that left me surprised. At one point I thought the film was going to do a one-eighty and really turn itself upside down, which would’ve made for a more interesting film but not necessarily a better one. In short, nothing stands out as amazing nor does anything really make me an unhappier person. This needed some more originality rather than hoping the viewer would just relate to the experiences portrayed and like the movie as a whole because of it. There’s obviously some interesting conversations to be had surrounding spirituality, religion and the extent to which people should try to help others they think need saving but this film really just repeats what the average person should already understand.   

Our Grade: C, I don’t hate this film by any means and there was definitely a creative approach taken by the filmmakers that, while it fell a little short, I can appreciate. I also appreciated the nod to the craziness of 1999 and the looming introduction of a new century despite not being born until ’99. Maybe someone who actually lived through that time would enjoy this film more than me. Nonetheless, I really did enjoy aspects of this film. It just really needed some tension breakers; without them, it was like spending ninety minutes with a clenched jaw. You can take it or leave it, depending on how much you like a religion centric plot.

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Author: Cal Gessner