Goes Without Saying
Directed by Pierre Sabrou | Review by Antonio Rozich
Ironically, although a student project, Goes Without Saying is a movie that can teach any independent filmmaker a thing or two about making movies. Every scene moves the story forward; there’s not a single frame that’s redundant. Although a silent film made in the 1920-style, it uses both the image and the sound to its fullest. Well, it’s sort of a 1920-style film… no spoilers. I don’t want to ruin the amazement this film brings to the table.
Nevertheless, not a single note or picture will make you yawn while impatiently waiting for the next “big” moment. The 11 minutes of this film is a perfectly filtered piece of art that doesn’t use the recorded material to meet some “fictional quota” nobody cares about. It uses these 11 minutes to do exactly what it’s meant to do – to entertain; something that plenty of today’s filmmakers are having a hard time with. And here’s the biggest twist; exactly because it aims to achieve this “humble goal”, it manages to do so much more.
As I’m writing this review, I’m having a tough time not to spill the beans as the main twist is the real engine of the entire film. It’s more than a mere plot twist. It’s a story and filmmaking twist perfectly merged into one. A fantastic example of what some creativity and filmmaking knowledge is capable of doing. And although it would make the writing job easier if I gave the big reveal, a single film review isn’t worth the pleasure you’ll get by watching Goes Without Saying. With that in mind, I’ll focus on the little signs that will steer you towards the goal but will not ruin the pleasure of getting there.
First, the story. It’s as simple as it gets. A man sees a lovely woman, instantly falls in love and in the attempt to charm her, gets into trouble. Now, let’s say we gave the plot summary to 100 different directors. How many of them do you think would come up with something new and refreshing? Probably not many. But if the young director Pierre Sabrou were in that bunch, he’d stick out like a bright light bulb in a dark cave. What starts as a light comedy, slowly takes a twisting path only to get back right where it started without losing the momentum. The snowball continually rolls and get bigger and more remarkable with each passing second. Every next scene makes you ask “serious” questions and instantly rinse it with a massive glass of lighthearted comedy that’s sure to put a smile on your face. It’s a simple plot efficiently approached from many corners; comedy, drama and even Sci-Fi.
This brings us to the second point: filmmaking. A winning horse is only as good as the jockey meaning you can have a great story, but if presented poorly, you get nothing. Luckily for the audience, both the horse and the jockey are top class. To use a more “professional” terminology, the story and the directing are in perfect sync. The film takes the classic 1920s tricks and goofs and gives them an entirely fresh look. This results in scenes that are instantly recognizable yet original. Again, if we gave the plot summary that’s been chewed upon so many times in cinema, how many filmmakers could come up with something new?
Finally, it goes without saying that this film is a must-watch. A film that sobers us up whenever we face a forgetful hangover of why independent filmmaking is vital for any art – especially cinema.
Antonio Rozich is a seasoned copywriter and the chief editor for Cult Critic – meaning, if you’re a filmmaker you’ll either love or hate him. Besides his usual copywriting, he also helps filmmakers with their screenplays by editing them and finding the ways to improve the initial filmmaker’s idea. When all of that is done, he turns to his true & original love: writing flash fiction filled with philosophy, life and cake metaphors.