Highway One

Highway One
Original title:Highway One
Director:Jaclyn Bethany
Running time:87 minutes
Release date:00 0000 (France)

Mulder's Review

Discovered as part of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), the second film written and directed by Jaclyn Bethany after Indigo Valley (2017) and numerous shorts, Highway One won us over. It reminds us of a part of our past in which getting together meant having a good time but also led to interesting discussions whether it was at a wedding, a New Year's Eve party with friends or on other occasions.

While some countries are still in the midst of a pandemic related to covid 19 and the United States and England have shown the world that it was possible to vaccinate millions of people in a short time, the rest of the world is still forced to be in confinement and is deprived of everything that allows us to evacuate the stress (cinema, restaurants, theater and concerts)

The story of Highway One is rather simple except for a very original twist of fate that reminds us once again that appearances are often deceiving and that the magic of cinema is to reproduce our society but in an artificial way. In Cambria, California, Anna (Marié Botha) organizes a New Year's Eve party. Nina (Juliette Labelle), a long lost high school friend, makes an appearance at the party after returning to Cambria from New York.

Maria (Aisha Fabienne Ross), one of the guests, must deal with her feelings about Nina's presence and confront the party attendees, a bunch of eccentric millennials. Practically taking place in real time and relying on the attitude of several people at a party, Highway One has the merit of managing to hold our attention throughout the film thanks to a solid direction of actors and a scenario conducive to highlighting excellent dialogues.

Highway one is a nostalgic dive into the youth, the relationships and annoyances of these young adults and their way of apprehending their future. By relying on a multitude of young actresses more or less experienced, Highway One testifies to the attachment of its director to give life to characters deeply human and hiding for some under deceptive appearances (like this teenager saying he is Russian while he is only an American who wants to capture the attention of others).

Highway One is well worth the detour, if only to discover a whole new generation of actresses, some of whom are likely to make a name for themselves in the near future. Above all, this film makes us want to go back to our old life, where we could go out, celebrate life and live life to the fullest.

Highway One
Written and directed by Jaclyn Bethany
Produced by Mikhail Makeyev, Rebecca Morandi
Starring Belle Aykroyd, Greta Bellamacina, Stella Baker, Ivy George, Bailey Edwards, Marié Botha, Juliette Labelle, Aisha Fabienne Ross
Music by Dalal Bruchmann, Maesa Pullman
Cinematography : Irene Gomez-Emilsson
Release date : April 1, 2021 (SBIFF)
Running time : 87 minutes

Seen on April 4, 2021 (SBIFF)

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