Little pieces – Adam Nelson’s powerful, micro-budget debut film
Written and directed by: Adam Nelson
Non-linear story telling is an interesting tool in building the story of a film. It can sometimes take away from the audience’s attachment to the world in which the film takes place, leaving them disinterested. Other times it succeeds in adding to the interest of the viewer, by forcing them to be patient and piece things together to understand the film as a whole. In Adam Nelson’s coming of age, debut film “Little Pieces” he uses the non-linear approach greatly to the film’s advantage. The story bounces forwards and backwards throughout, and adds an extra layer of intrigue that would not have been there otherwise.
Nelson’s story centers on three young people Michael (Nainby-Luxmore), Eric (Jones), and Cheryl (Glinn). All three are dealing with some form of suffering, through the first steps into adulthood. The young trio’s determination and struggle to escape the darker parts of their lives is central to everything that happens. All three of them turn in excellent performances, in what are not easy roles for such inexperienced actors. Some of the most memorable scenes of the film come from the tender connections between Michael and Cheryl.
Many pieces (I know I know) are used to fit this puzzle of a movie together. There are multiple layers of issues and emotions coming from all angles (and all characters). This could potentially hurt the film by making it too much ,in the “Dark and gritty” department. Instead, all of the elements are beautifully woven together to create a profound story, set in a almost all too real world of anger, betrayal, and revenge.
The film is technically sound, and the score is beautiful and very effective. It is the story telling that really blew me away though. Nelson does an amazing job at connecting us to his characters and their individual struggles. I would love to see what he could do with a bigger budget. Hopefully, sooner rather than later, I will.