Equal parts black comedy, road movie and spiritual fairytale, Goran Dukic's first feature could be advertised as "They're young, they're in love, and they're dead," as the film charts the path that one young suicide (Patrick Fugit) takes to locate his equally dead girlfriend.
Dark humor and a sense of impassioned romance coexist with memorable results in Goran Dukic's new Sundance-success debut feature, an absurdist comedy about Zia (Patrick Fugit, of Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous), who won't let anything stand between him and the love of his life -- not even suicide, not even death. When Zia almost matter-of-factly slashes his wrists one day, he is whisked off to an afterlife that isn't all that different from the place that he left. Let's face it: when you're lonely and miserable, even the best of places can seem like purgatory or hell. It's like that special vacation that you eagerly awaited, only to find that it’s ruined because, well, you're there. And that's Zia's problem. It isn't life that he wanted to escape, but just himself –- and now he's trapped in an afterlife where he works in a pizza joint and shares an apartment with a roommate. Things look up when Zia discovers that his dream girl, Desiree (Leslie Bibb), heartsick about losing him, also committed suicide. His decision to track her down in the afterlife catapults him into his own road movie, a sort of fractured Wizard of Oz that brings him together with fellow oddball travelers. One of them is the malcontent Eugene (Shea Whigham), a former Russian rock star whose entire suicidal family has managed to wind up in the afterlife. "Not every family is as lucky as we are," Eugene's mother (Mary Pat Gleason) deadpans. The idiosyncratic Tom Waits and the gorgeous Shannyn Sossamon are among Zia's other encounters in this singular and often poignant little film that contains a big heart, as well as a distinctly Eastern European sensibility that Dukic clearly brought with him from Serbo-Croatia.
—Joe Baltake, PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Director: Goran Dukic
Screenplay: Goran Dukic
Cast: Abraham Benrubi
Producers: Chris Coen, Tatiana Kelly, Mikal P. Lazarev, Adam Sherman
Distributor: AfterDark Films