In the new film, “Disconnect,” be prepared to re-examine your online activities. Director Henry Alex Rubin doesn’t get preachy about our obsession with the Internet. Instead, he treats it as a fact of life. But he also delves into the dangerous repercussions of seemingly innocuous behavior when being online gets horribly out of control.
Three interlocking stories are told simultaneously, all of which are rapidly approaching devastating outcomes. Rich Boyd (Jason Bateman) and his wife, Lydia (Hope Davis), have a loner son, Ben (Jonah Bobo), who’s targeted by two cyber bullies. Derek Hull (Alexander Skarsgard) and wife, Cindy (Paula Patton), have recently lost their baby and she seeks solace on a bereavement website, while he hunts down the identity theft who’s put them in financial straits. And TV reporter Nina Durham (Andrea Riseborough) is trying to make a name for herself by exposing an underage sex ring through interviews with an Internet teen porn star (Max Thieriot).
Frank Grillo plays an ex-cop, cyber detective who helps the Hulls with their identity theft and also just happens to be the father of one of the cyber bullies. There’s a lot of intertwining going on in “Disconnect” but it works beautifully. And fear not, one doesn’t have to be technically savvy to get what’s going on in this gripping, emotionally charged film.
Moreover, “Disconnect” is all about reconnecting. Sons and fathers, husbands and wives, exploiters and victims of exploitation all come full circle to confront their demons and rectify their mistakes. Rubin — directing his first feature film (widely known for his outstanding documentary “Murderball”) — scores high marks for his insightful forage into human suffering. He also manages to extract first-rate performances from all of the actors.
Jason Bateman, the master of deadpan humor (“Horrible Bosses”) is magnificently heartbreaking as a grieving father whose only way to understand his son is via his computer. And Andrea Riseborough’s character’s astounding transformation is both visually and emotionally astounding. There’s absolutely no bad casting in this must-see film.
There’s a shocking scene in which Ben’s sister spits into her best friend’s face. And it hit me — this was a moment of real, genuine contact. Up to that point everyone communicated technologically. If anything, “Disconnect” demonstrates that the lack of human connections can have tragic consequences. Beware.
Currently 0 Responses
16 The Gloria Musicae Singers in a Munchtime Musicales Performance
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
17 Piero Rivolta's Book Launch Party for One Life, Many Lives.
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
18 Paper Laine: Gracie Kennedy Solo-Show @ madeby Gallery Ringling College of Art and Design
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
18 Chroma Quartet
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
A Cinderella story
A 10-week-old miniature pinscher puppy found a “happily ever after ending” at the Celebration of Pets April 12, at the Sarasota County Fairgrounds.
Pharmacy brings dose of medicine to Publix
The in-store pharmacy of Longboat Key Publix opened Monday, approximately 16 months after the completion of the new store at 525 Bay Isles Parkway, in the Shoppes of Bay Isles.
Golfer scores victory with less than a stroke
The Longboat Key Masters Golf Tournament, which took place March 28 through March 31, at the Resort at Longboat Key Club’s Islandside and Harbourside golf courses came down to less than one stroke’s difference between first-place winner Kevin Preston and second-place winner Michael Russell, of Longboat Key.