TIFF 2014: Meet Me in Montenegro
It’s been seven years since Alex Holdridge directed the Independent Spirit Award winning film In Search of a Midnight Kiss. His latest film, Meet Me in Montenegro, is about just that–a filmmaker who hasn’t made a film in nearly a decade. Coincidence? Not likely. The film unfolds like an autobiography for the director, who stars as an indie filmmaker desperately trying to break into Hollywood. Or at least make a film that can pull him out of the massive amount of debt he has accrued.
The film centers around a breakup between him and a girl named Lina who spontaneously leaves him during a stay in Montenegro. She ends up being his kryptonite because in spite of the pain she caused him, he still can’t get her off his mind. While traveling to Berlin for an important business meeting on his upcoming film, he unexpectedly runs into Lina and sparks begin to fly despite their better judgement. Eventually he must decide between his career or his love life.
Meet Me in Montenegro isn’t ashamed of showing clichés often found in movies, especially at the end where Holdridge flat-out acknowledges the movie-like ending. These meta moments are constant reminders that you’re watching a movie, occasionally removing you from the story. While Holdridge makes some huge advancements as a filmmaker, most noticeably in cinematography and editing, the story feels too familiar make a lasting impression. While Meet Me in Montenegro isn’t Holdridge’s best work, it’s welcoming to see him return to filmmaking. Hopefully it’s not another seven years before his next one.