Waves is a remarkable and powerful film in many ways. It’s a story of a family and what happens when the stresses become so much that something horrific happens.
Waves is experienced in two parts. Before the horrific event and after. The action focuses on the high school age children. Both young actors give stunning and brilliant performances
The first half of the film looks at Tyler (Kelvin Harrison Jr.). He’s a wrestler. He body builds with his dad Ronald (Sterling K. Brown), who drives him relentlessly. His girlfriend is Alexis (Alexa Demie).
The stepmother, Catherine (Renée Elise Goldsberry), is a doctor. The family is properous. They live in Florida.
The second half of the film is spent with Tyler’s younger sister Emily (Taylor Russell). The emotional feel of the second half of the film is very different because of what has happened to the family.
Emily finds a boyfriend, Luke (Lucas Hedges). Her experiences with him help her come to terms with her own family situation.
Trey Edward Shults wrote and directed Waves. The entire film was an onslaught of light, sound, movement, and emotion. The camera waved around with dizzying speed, lights and colors were almost psychedelic. Parts of the action were just light and music like tunnels through hell or wormholes into another dimension. Other parts were quiet and intimate.
At times, I felt as if I was seeing an inexperienced, experimental film. At other times it felt like the most powerful filmmaking I’d ever seen. All in all, it was a moving work of art. What happened to this family could happen to any family.
Take a look at the trailer. At IMDB, you can see a trailer with commentary by the director.
Have you seen Waves? I’d love to hear your thoughts about it.