These Streets We Haunt (2021)
If you haven’t already figured it out, my streaming choices tend to tilt toward indie and foreign (or international if your delicate sensitivities are offended) flicks. I like to think it is because they offer the viewer a higher risk/reward factor than one would face with standard (read formulaic) Hollywood fare, but maybe I’m just pretentious AF. Who knows? (Don’t answer that.) What I do know is that the first warning sign in any independent movie is seeing the phrase “Written and Directed by” in the opening credits, because far more often than not, it means neither will be done well. And that is certainly the case here, with dialog that goes from good to terrible in a heartbeat, and direction that allows scenes and the story to lag, wander off, and noticeably miss the mark at times. But the writer/director is not alone in the letdown. There’s an abundance of bad acting throughout the supporting cast (another frequent indie film pitfall) as well as sets and lighting that make you wonder where what little money they had actually went. It didn’t take long at all for me to feel disappointed and know this wasn’t going to be a hidden gem. The flaws and flails had somehow managed to suck some of the drama out of this drama. Yet, there was also just enough in the intriguing story premise, the capable performances by the leads, and in the emotional chords that did hit, to not only keep me watching, but make me smile at the end. In short I concurrently disliked and liked this movie . . . and if that’s not the definition of 2.5 stars, I don’t know what is!