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The Independent Critic

Jessica Lynn Parsons, Raymond Creamer, Becca Scott, Robert Palmer Watkins, Tracey Fairaway, Amelia Brantley, Kayli Tran
Jerry J. White III
Raymond Creamer
86 Mins.

 "This Is Us" Set for Screening at Raindance 
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The second feature film from Jerry J. White III, This Is Us, is set for its world premiere at the U.K.-based Raindance Film Festival later this month, a tremendous affirmation for the indie project that stars Jessica Lynn Parsons as Daniela, a young woman breaking things off with her boyfriend, Brendan (Raymond Creamer), who keeps finding out that the universe has other plans. Desperate to move on, Daniela is instead forced to relive the memories they've built together. As a film, This Is Us pinballs through time as Daniela attempts to rewrite the history she's shared with Brendan in an effort to re-discover the man whom she once loved. 

Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, White is now an award-winning filmmaker based in L.A. whose first feature film, The Horror, is scheduled for distribution this fall. This Is Us may be a more difficult sell, though with the film just beginning its festival run it'll be interesting to see how audiences respond to the film's moody, atmospheric visuals and language that make the film a stronger candidate for niche' distribution than a theatrical release. 

The largest indie film fest in the U.K., Raindance is an ideal world premiere for This Is Us, an ultra-indie project that is occasionally hindered by the tech issues often associated with no-budget/low-budget filmmaking including a muddy sound mix and transition scenes that don't always transition quite as smoothly as one would like. 

On the flip side, Tristan Noelle's lensing is creative and inspired and creates richness and authenticity despite of, and maybe even because of, those same budgetary limitations. Both Creamer, who also penned the script, and Parsons perform ably as a fractured couple reliving those fractures in an effort to, just maybe, figure out what went wrong and how to fix it. 

I know you're thinking it, so I'll just go ahead and say it - yeah, you could kinda/sorta call this a seriously heavier Groundhog Day, though that would be a massive over-simplification of what unfolds and what it all means. 

This Is Us isn't for everyone. This is going to be one of those films that you'll either love it or hate it, though strangely enough I found myself in the middle of the road largely owing to an occasional pacing problem that kept me from every fully buying into the relationship or immersing myself into its salvation. Others, I have no doubt, won't have this issue and my suspicion is that the indie fest circuit will embrace the film exactly for what it is - a uniquely realized story that lingers in the psyche' even after the closing credits have rolled by.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic