SXSW has brought its own wave of movies either made during last year’s lockdown or based on sentiment from it. A lot of them played it in a more literal way, like they were trying to be time capsules. But a movie like “AyarDirected by Floyd Russ, feels more liberated than many of his like-minded peers. It responds to Lockdown’s creative restrictions with an exciting artistic abandon, an invigorating approach to see unfold for a film that then concerns its very creation.
“Ayar” is part of a COVID horror story, family drama, star vehicle, and behind-the-scenes experience. In one of her diapers, it’s a woman named Ayar (Ariana Ron Pedrique) who longs to see her five-year-old daughter, Jasmine, after many months away. But it’s not sure because of COVID, according to her mother Renata (Vilma Vega). Ayar was also removed from his post with a focus on a showbiz career in Las Vegas that primarily leads to a bad relationship with a powerful man, a lifestyle choice that has taken Ayar away from his family but also echoes that. failed dreams of his mother. Now Ayar is stuck in a motel where the neighbor is coughing violently, and the roots begin to invade the walls of Ayar’s room.
In another layer, “Ayar” focuses on the people around its main character, who have their own stories of how they got to where they are now, which now means the creation of “Ayar”. The script underlines this in different ways: A brief slideshow of photos of the actors takes place after the introduction of many of the characters, a celebration of who they are to match the low-angle shots that make them look awe-inspiring in the face of the sunny aesthetic with reflections. lighting. Later, “Ayar” then delves into the cast members sharing brief life stories, highlighting the script’s floating ideas of how Ayar and her mother equate their place in immigrant experiences to role-playing. . One of the many questions the film asks: why not turn your pandemic project into a tapestry of these different lives and these living faces?
It’s a film in which the collective mentality is to put everything together and see what sticks together. By design, not everything works, and there are elements that are tactile and play out as doors from a different scenario that are opened but not entered (this is especially the case with his dreamlike COVID stuff) . Some aesthetic choices are ridiculously old-fashioned, like all the times it presents a cut ‘signal’, and sometimes the included backstage makes it seem like it’s adding more to runtime than adding to the story. .