Blind Sun

Set in a deserted seaside town in Greece in the midst of a global water crisis, Blind Sun is a wonderfully shot thriller which is unapologetically patient in its dedication to surmounting suspense. It’s the ideal backdrop for writer and director Joyce Nashawati to explore uncomfortable humanitarian and environmental issues, but these themes fail to harmonise with the supernatural elements of the story.

Nashawati creates an atmosphere of desolated isolation by pivoting the plot almost entirely on Ashraf Idriss (effortlessly portrayed by Ziad Bakri), an immigrant care-taking a villa haunted by apparitions. The scenes of arid landscapes, derelict dwellings, stray dogs, corrupt lawmen and paranormal anomalies all emphasise the solitude of the protagonist, who predicts: “There’s going to be a war. Or everything will burn.” The biblical simplicity of the dialogue (which interchanges between French, Greek and English) echoes Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea and Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, while the surreal intensity of the cinematography alludes to the work of David Lynch.

Arguably, the film’s inability to integrate its complex critiques with its minimal style is its greatest folly: it’s an apocalyptic thriller, filmed through an irresistibly nostalgic and halcyon lens. Like Less Than Zero and The Rules of Attraction by Bret Easton Ellis, Blind Sun should be understood as a dystopian snapshot into our populist present and frail futures. If we treat this feature with standard conventions, we risk missing its fable.

CAST
Ziad Bakri
Mimi Denissi
Louis-Do de Lencquesaing

DIRECTOR
Joyce A. Nashawati

SCREENPLAY
Joyce A. Nashawati

SHUDDER
9 February 2017

Posted by Jim Reader

Jim is a London-based journalist who has worked for a number of titles, including Bizarre, Loaded, Vogue, Boxing News and the Daily Sport. He graduated from The University of Nottingham in 2009 and became a Master of Research in American Literature in 2010.