She Dies Tomorrow ★★★½

(my review for Willamette Week, where i write a weekly repertory film column called “Get Your Reps In” btw!)

Amy (Kate Lyn Sheil) knows for a fact that she’s going to die tomorrow. She’s seen things. Heard things. She just knows. Obviously, her best friend Jane (Jane Adams) doesn’t believe her at first. But then Jane begins having the same ominous visions. Now, Jane knows for a fact that she’s going to die tomorrow. As does Jane’s brother (❤️❤️❤️Chris Messina❤️❤️❤️), and his wife, and her friends, etc. etc. 

In most mainstream thrillers, we’d probably see the characters team up to fight death, but writer/director Amy Seimetz is detached from narrative convention, and her kaleidoscopic sophomore feature is, honestly, a lot less thrilling than it sounds. This is by no means a negative –– it’s contemplative and challenging, harnessing dread from the fatal contagion of existentialist-fueled anxiety. In Seimetz’s neon-soaked world, Death is a natural process, something to resign to instead of futilely resist.

Though some viewers may find the aimless ambiguity baffling, this is a film to fully feel with all senses, to marinate in, rather than agonize over the intentional lack of logic and answers. Anxiety itself is often irrational, so this is Seimetz’s impressionistic response to that all-too-ubiquitous frustration.

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