Goin Ape 2 – Review

More often than not, there are interesting films made which have an interesting way of telling a story. My personal favourites always involve some abstract style of filming, and I got to check another one of those out just recently, a film called Goin Ape 2 by Toly AK. Toly is a resilient filmmaker, and a hope for people with disabilities everywhere. He has done various cast and crew jobs in BC, and is someone I would view as a glass-half-full guy even with his invisible disability and an unfortunate incident when he got run over by a drunk driver. Despite these issues, he stays strong to this day and has even found the humour in it. Plus he continues to make movies, he’s already applied for a grant for his next project so I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next. First off, I got prepared in watching his latest work of art.

In Toly’s own words, Goin Ape 2 is kind of like watching between tv shows tv shows that do not exist, and the whole thing is in grayscale, b/w to some of you. He did so for aesthetic reasons, and selected some special choice actors giving them long enough speaking roles for perfect demo reel material. 

But what is it about? We get a few different clips involving a news reporter pointing out a big drug bust, a man drinking coffee and stating claims much to the entertainment of a couple other customers, and our protagonist Rob (Stephen Huddlestone) who would rather do drugs than find some actual work and move out of the small town he’s residing in. Rob hangs out with his girlfriend Judy (Juliana Salerno), rides around town in public Transit, and explains his problems to his Dr. Smith (Ian Keiller). Other storylines within include a young lady named Suzy (Rachel Stone) and her friends going to a restaurant to catch up on recent events, an elderly man named Joe Flaherty (Bobby Lacombe) who once was a fighter, some medical students struggling their way through their courses, and a few other small stories. But somehow everyone gets together in the most unexpected way much later on. At one point near the middle, Judy talks to Joe and they get approached by a couple of goons who demand her overdue pay. Even more conflicts begin to arise, as two girls plan to run away together, and Rob finds himself to be the next victim what with his girlfriend owing money to all sorts of people. He goes to a man named Ape (Toly A.K. himself) for help and Ape gives him some advice in rhyme, confusing Rob. Joe ends up going to jail much to the police chief’s surprise, and the couple give Ape their home before they run away. So what happens, does Rob finally pay off Judy’s death, what does Ape do next, will Joe survive prison, and does anyone else get through their conflicts? There are quite a few endings but I won’t give any of them away. You’ll just have to wait for this film to come out on a festival near you.

One of the most artistic films ever, it starts out confusing, but as people from the different stories form together, it makes more sense as it reaches the end. Toly didn’t have much finance in this film and that shows, but it still makes for a great story, even if the props are cardboard signs and the onset food is single slices of bread. We get some other items in the mix, like some prop pistols to amp the drama and make things interesting. The shots themselves are well arranged, it’s interesting how the stories are laid out and you don’t see them fitting into place just yet, and the entire concept of the film was impressively made. Normally multiple contrasting stories are confusing to follow along, but this one is done in a way that you’ll soon understand within a matter of time. After all, the whole thing is roughly an hour, and it’s got some of the most interesting thrills and greatest concepts for a story ever. Even for a lot of stories.

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