One Perfect Day

What is it about techno music that causes filmmakers to use it as lynchpin for some cathartic, life-altering experience?  It worked a bit in Groove, but doesn't work at all in One Perfect Day, an Australian import that is all over the place.  The story veers in all sorts of directions, and the characters are not compelling enough overcome the shortcomings in the plot.  Well, at least the soundtrack includes Fatboy Slim, Orbital, the Dust Brothers, Underworld, and Groove Armada.  It's a dream for lovers of electronic music, and would probably be better if music drowned out much of the dialogue.

The main character is Tommy Matisse (Dan Spielman, Tom White), a music prodigy who hates the confines of classical music.  Matisse thinks outside the box, and finds music in everyday sounds that people ignore. Of course, he's also an artist, which means he has to disappear for long amounts of time.  Strangest of all, he appears to have little knowledge of electronica, despite the fact that his sister Emma (Abbie Cornish, Somersault, The Monkey's Mask) leaves him messages while mixing records.  Her death at a club due to a drug overdose forces Matisse, his girlfriend Alysse Green (Leeanna Walsman, Attack of the Clones) to face reality.

Green was with Emma the night of her death, and that revelation prompts Matisse to leave her.  The two were planning on making music together as a couple.  Now, Matisse wanders around in a daze, trying to understand the world that Emma inhabited, as if to somehow understand her death more.  Green succumbs to the world of drugs, and pursues an opportunity for a recording contract.  It just so happens that her contact, Trig (Nathan Phillips, Wolf Creek, Under the Radar), is also her pusher, AND the one who gave the drugs to Emma, AND the one who's helping Matisse break into the music world.

Director Paul Currie (Lionheart:  The Jesse Martin Story), who co-wrote the screenplay with Chip Richards, give One Perfect Day a very simplistic feeling. Even though characters are going through complex things, they are doing so in such a way that is very predictable, and even a bit lame at times. The plot feels like Currie and Richards never really saw a movie before. Every time they focus on characters, One Perfect Day, which, incidentally, takes place over multiple days, slows down to a crawl. The rave scenes are the only ones full of life, even the prerequisite scene where Matisse wows everybody by combining classical sensibilities with modern music. This may have been groundbreaking a decade ago, but at this point, it's completely passe. Now, if he and Antonio Banderas' character from Take the Lead got together, they could combine classical music, ballroom dance, techno music, and hip-hop dance to form an unstoppable force of good.
Mongoose Rates It: Not That Good.
1 hour, 45 minutes, Not Rated but contains language, drug use, and brief sexuality, most likely an R.

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