‘Life Just Is’ is an independent film written and directed by Alex Barrett and starring Paul Nicholls, and Fiona Ryan. The film centres on a group of five friends, who have all recently graduated from university and who are now facing the full responsibilities of adult life.
Pete, Tom, Jay, David and Claire, are just a normal group of young adults who after finishing university are now making their way in the world with new jobs and building new relationships. By making his characters those who have already completed their university lives, Barrett, cleverly puts them at a stage of their lives where they have outgrown all the usual student clichés but still before the age where they’ve established themselves. The contrast comes from the ‘older’ character of Bobby, who is Jay’s new boyfriend and is in his mid thirties. When telling the group about his job and ‘career’ Jay tells him that it’s not something they like to mention, perhaps like many new university graduates although they have thought about the question, they have yet to reach a conclusion. With the exception of Pete, they all have jobs, but only to pay the bills. The most thought provoking dialogue, is voiced by Pete, who is thinking about finding God but unsure how to proceed. Barrett said he wanted to ‘examine the attitudes towards religion within the new generation’. This is very much realised in the discussions between Pete and Tom who have different attitudes and both are expressed eloquently. Each character in the group has their own kind of sub-plot either on their own or with one of the others although the role of David is somewhat underplayed. We don’t know much about his personal life, other than he does a lot of charity work and a brief mention of him being gay. He doesn’t have his own ‘story’ like the others do and it feels slightly missed.
This is a film that is reflective but at the same time is about moving forward. ‘Life Just Is’ is intelligent, insightful and for the large part fairly accurate.
It’s Kinda Cool Score: 3/5