Young Ones (2014) - Jake Paltrow
Taking place in the not-so-distant future, Jake Paltrow's Young One's introduces us to a world where water has become the most precious resource on the planet, dictating everything from politics to relationships between neighbors and family. With much of the land completely decimated by drought, hardened survivors struggle to survive with whatever they can find. Earnest Holm lives in these harsh conditions on the frontier with his children, Jerome and Mary. Earnest believes his land is still fertile, spending most of his time petitioning to the local politicans to send a water-pipe through his land. Unbeknownst to Earnest, Mary's boyfriend, Flem Lover, has sinister plans, wanting the land for himself, and willing to go to extreme lengths to get it. Jake Paltrow's Young Ones is a futuristic western that is told in three chapters, one each of its three main characters in Earnest, Jerome, and Flem. This is a strange narrative decision but it works surprisingly well, giving the viewer a chance to get to know each of these characters, understanding their thoughts, feelings, and emotions. The futuristic aspects of the Young Ones is well done, with inventive ideas that are quite impressive given the film's relatively miniscule budget. This futuristic aspect doesn't get in the way of the narrative, feeling very much like an old American Westerns, steeped in Greek tragedy of a young boy in Jerome, having to grow up fast and protect himself and his family. Flem is a very atypical character for actor Nicholas Hoult, a deceptive, sinister man whose essentially weasled his way into a family and land, effectively taking the place of Earnest in the family unit through malicious actions. Young Ones' narrative itself isn't nearly as compelling as it should be, but considering the film's unique dystopian world and shakespearan ideas, it's a relatively memorable film none-the-less.
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