Sedona International Film Festival Review: Echo Lake

Sedona International Film Festival Review: Echo Lake

Echo Lake is a pleasurable redemption story, and allows the viewer to reflect on their life, and how they perceive whatever luxuries that may be at their disposal.

Most of us have felt the grueling emotions that come with heartbreak. Whether that be a bad breakup, a death in the family, or simply being wronged by someone close to you. Feeling violated, we naturally form a wall and enter defense mode, making every attempt to protect ourselves emotionally. We’ve been fooled/hurt/shamed/embarrassed and we won’t let it happen again.  Well, in Echo Lake, Director Jody McVeigh-Schultz is able to encapsulate a touching story about a man holding a grudge against his father, and the experiences he must endure to move past it.

 This feature is a narrative that follows Will Baxter, played remarkably by Sam Zvibleman, who is a very imperfect man afforded with many luxuries in life. After one too many screw-ups, he is kicked out by his girlfriend, so he escapes to a cabin left to him by his father to find himself. In his time spent in this cabin, he is introduced to some new people who allow him to learn more about himself, but more importantly his father,  and the love that he possessed for him. As he is exposed to a side of his deceased father he has never experiences, he finds what is important in life: family, friends, and experiences.  Echo Lake was an enjoyable experience, watching this man overcome the grudge he had held so deeply against his father. After spending time in the desolate cabin, he realizes the whole time he has been angry at himself, fighting himself, and all that is bad in his life is his own causing, and I believe that is something we can all implement into our thinking.

Echo Lake is beautifully shot, with scenery choices and cinematography that simply blows you away.  The acting is impeccable, with an incredibly strong lead and humorous, charming supporting roles to round it out. The screenplay, written by Director McVeigh-Schultz, is captivating and truly forces you to have a connection with the characters, which are developed extremely well. Film Festival screenplays have a tendency to be narrow and one dimensional, however this narrative has an intriguing plot line, and ties a few different angles together quite nicely. This film is able to communicate the impact that one can feel when they find themselves and open their heart to acceptance, and more importantly, forgiveness.

If you missed Echo Lake at Sedona Film Festival, you’ll have another chance to catch this film at Durango Independent Film Festival March 4th and 5th. I’d definitely recommend it, this powerful film can change the way you look at negatives in your life.

 

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