Review: A Unique Take on Death in ‘The A-Frame’

Calvin Reeder’s film, “The A-Frame,” delves into the themes of death and the desire to escape its clutches. The movie follows Donna, a young pianist facing a terminal illness, who is approached by a scientist offering a potential solution using quantum physics. However, as Donna navigates this new realm of possibilities, the film struggles to find its footing between dark humor and existential sci-fi.

The dialogue-heavy nature of the film, centered around a cancer therapy group led by Linda, sets the stage for exploring fear and desire in the face of mortality. Donna, portrayed as a sardonic and guarded individual, brings a layer of complexity to the narrative as she grapples with her diagnosis and the scientist’s unconventional offer.

While the concept of parallel realities and multiversal entanglement adds a layer of intrigue, the film falls short in fully exploring these ideas. The directorial choices, such as noncommittal framing and lack of emotional depth in editing, hinder the audience’s immersion into the story. Additionally, the performances of the cast, aside from Rishi, lack depth and fail to fully convey the emotional weight of the characters’ struggles.

Despite brief moments of visceral body horror and glimpses of humor through Rishi’s character, “The A-Frame” struggles to strike a balance between humor, poignancy, and seriousness. The film’s guarded approach to exploring death through a genre lens leaves it feeling incomplete and lacking in true emotional resonance.

In conclusion, “The A-Frame” presents a tonally-awkward yet intriguing exploration of death and the human desire for escape, but falls short in fully realizing its potential.

Calvin Reeder is an American filmmaker known for his unique and often surreal approach to storytelling. Born in the United States, Reeder began his career in the film industry with a focus on independent and experimental projects. His work often delves into themes of mortality, identity, and the human psyche, challenging viewers to question conventional narratives and expectations in cinema. Throughout his career, Reeder has received critical acclaim for his bold and imaginative storytelling, establishing himself as a distinctive voice in the world of independent film.