Sundance Film Festival reviews: Peter Dinklage, Elle Fanning fantastic in “I Think We’re Alone Now


Not rated

Directed by Reed Morano

Written by Mike Makowsky

Starring Peter Dinklage, Elle Fanning

Grade: Three and a half stars

 

There’s nothing like the end of the world to teach you about human connection.

That’s the truth at the heart of “I Think We’re Alone Now,” a post-apocalyptic story about solitude, grief, love, and the importance of the person sitting next to you. It’s a quiet, offbeat and oddly wonderful little love story that’s like nothing you’ve seen before.

The apocalypse actually makes things easier for Dale (played by Peter Dinklage), a recluse who quietly cleans up his now-empty town and lives a peaceful life at the local library. His routine is upended, however, when another survivor appears with a cavalcade of fireworks. Grace (played by Elle Fanning) is loud and full of questions, but her boisterousness hides secrets that may change Dale’s life forever.

Dinklage is fantastic as Dale, his wonderfully expressive face able to do so much with the movie’s long silences. When the dialogue does happen, he proves equally adept at sarcasm and vulnerability. Fanning gives Grace a brittleness that makes her boldness far more interesting, and has a strange gentleness that fits in well with Dale’s stillness. The chemistry between the two is far from traditional, a fragile heart that gives the movie a pulse of real life.

The movie leaves a lot of world-building questions unanswered, but the movie doesn’t really concern itself with what happened to everyone else. All it really cares about is what happens when two lonely people find each other, and to me that’s a beautiful thing.

 

(Photo courtesy of Sundance Institute)

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