The Movie Waffler New Release Review - My Name Is 'A' by Anonymous | The Movie Waffler

New Release Review - My Name Is 'A' by Anonymous

A group of troubled teenage girls murder a child.

Directed by: Shane Ryan
Starring: Katie Marsh, Demi Baumann, Teona Dolnikova, Alex Damiano

This is one of the few films I didn’t want to finish. Twenty minutes in I already had a headache from the vicious combination of the horrible shaky cam and the disgust I felt for what was explicitly paraded before me. I knew, not even half way through, nothing that happened in the second half would compensate for the random, disgusting and depressing opening of each character. 
Throughout the film, we meet two young girls spending their days degrading and belittling each other by listing a graphic assortment of sexual acts they should not even know about let alone even pretend to have already done while they begin cutting. There is a young woman who spends most of her screen time singing depressing songs, and despite having a lovely voice, she can’t seem to shake her depression. The last of the main four girls shown through the film is a bulimic woman who can’t stand the man she lives with.
Through the random peeks into each of these characters lives it all starts out as a random incomprehensible mess of scenes meant shock you into feeling sorry for them before you find out what they all have in common. It’s at the beginning of the third act that we find that all these women took part in the murder and burial of a small girl who we have only had glimpses of up until that point. These glimpses, while small, painted a picture of a happy little girl taken too soon. 
Apparently based on true events, the film uses a combination of ominous and found footage to shock the audience with a first person view of how depression strikes everyone differently. Some cut their wrists, some cry uncontrollably to no end, some become bulimic and collect their vomit in glass jars, and some turn to God and ask questions that will never be answered. Sadly, some get to a point when they can’t take it anymore and instead of getting help they lash out, which is what these girls did; while I know depression is a real thing, they are not justified in their actions.
I don’t believe the filmmakers are trying to make the audience empathize with the girls but they are probably just trying to make people more aware of depression. I don’t agree with the way they use the film to get that point across but I’m sure it will scare at least a few people, and if that leads to someone, or anyone getting help then I am all for it. Depression is a scary thing, mostly because so many don’t understand it, but I don’t think the way this film takes random segments of these characters' lives and slops them together in attempts, I assume, to be artistic or poetic works in its favor. Tread lightly, because if you can’t handle watching people cut themselves or vomit, this use of shock and awe isn’t for you.

Andy Comer