Review: ‘Other Months’ [SXSW 2014]

By Will Oliver, March 16th 2014 Reviews

Other Months Poster

Other Months | Nick Singer | SXSW 2014

Other Months is the debut feature-length film (although barely in at 70 minutes) of Nick Singer, who both wrote and directed it. The film takes portions of the life of twentysomething Nash (Christopher Bonewitz) and puts it on display for our viewing pleasure.

Nash is working temporarily as a plumber, until he figures out the rest of his life out. He spends his time hanging out at electronic dance clubs and partying with friends. He’s lost, as most are at that age. Singer shows us Nash’s life through extended snapshot scenes where we see Nash live his life. Such as waking up awkwardly with a female companion, or trying and clean up a basement filled up to knee-level with water. There’s a naturalism to Singer’s direction that makes it all seem real.

Singer presents us with a viewing experience, but as far as a plot goes, Other Month’s is lacking. The film is an observation of Nash throughout different months. We watch him try to get over the girl that broke his heart by hooking up with girls at raves or at a 4th of July party. Then he wrestles solitude and boredom in his apartment, where he does nothing but exist. He sleeps, cooks pasta, masturbates, orders takeout, and masturbates some more. It’s almost like being a fly on his wall. This apartment display brought out one of the film’s best scenes: where we watch Nash get drunk and let  all his emotions out as he blasts Animal Collective’s “For Reverend Green.”

It’s a noble first effort from Singer, who brings out a pretty solid performance from (his friend) Bonewitz, who shows a great deal of promise. He takes his role and puts everything he has into it. I was impressed.

Other Months is certainly an interesting journey, but I’m not sure if it’s a rewarding one. Sure, we see semblances of our own lives and may connect here or there, but it’s not enough. It did feel like a debut effort, and more of a 4 short films crammed into one whole. Even at 70 minutes it felt overlong at times, which isn’t a good thing. But on the whole, it’s a decent start for Singer.