Sick of seeing bad movies and thinking I was going to see "Freedomland" this weekend instead of "Date Movie," I thought it would be a nice change of pace to drive down to Denver and review one of the independents. Much to my surprise, and hoping to yours as well after reading this, I got a chance to see "11:59," a flick shot and produced entirely in Colorado, using only local Colorado talent.
"11:59" focuses on Aaron Doherty, a photojournalist for the ACN news network who just cracked his future in journalism wide open, breaking a story about the arrest of a key suspect in a series of two child murders. Out of nowhere, as Aaron is standing outside a bar next to his truck, he blacks out and wakes up in the middle of a field with absolutely nothing and no one around.
Completely baffled and a little pissed off, Aaron finds his way to a road and hitchhikes back into Denver, only to find out he's been missing for an entire 24 hours, missing an even bigger career opportunity and a surefire chance for promotion. Just when it seems like he's losing his mind and his career is ruined, things begin to click and come together. Aaron realizes that waking up in the field wasn't just an accident and the arrested man may have been wrongly accused with city-wide conspiracy lurking in every corner.
Head of the Denver-based production company Double Edge Films, Jamin Winans wrote and directed this flick having apparently worked on it for the past several years.
And it shows.
The cinematography is spectacular with lots of quick quirky cuts and really smooth dolly work. Some of the acting could have definitely used a bit of work with Aaron's reporter playing it a little on the overdramatic side at times, along with his boss Adele. But considering the story they were trying to pull off using purely local actor and actresses, it was a phenomenal job.
Maybe it's the fact that I'm from Denver and spend a lot of time there. Maybe it's the fact that an independent film with no budget for big-time actors and special effects just feels more wholesome and creative than a Hollywood flick with more money than they know what to do with.
Or maybe it's the fact that this is a genuinely good movie. For whichever reason it is, and I'm pretty sure it's the latter, "11:59" is more than a good excuse to make the short trek to Denver. It will be shown at the Starz Encore Tivoli Center Theatre on the Denver Metro Campus until March 2 before releasing to other select cities.
Support your local scene!
4 out of 5 ramheads.
Ryan Skeels can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org