British Film Producer Elliott Lester’s Nightingale had its’ world premier at LAFF on Thursday night. The film was voted as a LAFF Favourite by the mainstream media in the run-up to the festival. Nightingale screened as part of the Muse section which highlights movies set in, filmed in and inspired by Los Angeles. The film stars multi award-winning David Oyelowo (The Butler).
Nightingale tells the story of a lonely man, Peter Snowden, an outsider who longs for an intimate connection with another human. With no friends and no one to talk to Snowden creates a comforting illusion for himself by recording conversations with himself and posts them online in an attempt to encounter some interaction with the real world, in particular an old arm friend who wants nothing to do with him. However, this virtual world is only an illusion and the result of this is violent and devastating.
It soon becomes clear that Peter has recently killed his mother and her cold corpse is still in the bedroom upstairs. We are unsure of his reasons but it becomes evident that his inner unhappiness has much to do with it.
Nightingale explores the theme of ‘Social Comparison Theory’ which centres around the belief that there is a growing drive within individuals to gain accurate self-evaluations. This is particularly evident within today’s society when it comes to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
You might not be able to remember when you first looked at your mobile phone, but you will remember the last time you did. We are now in a world where no one looks up and everyone looks down, posting picture perfect images of their beautiful lives and beautiful selves on social networks.
The more ‘likes’, ‘followers’ and ‘comments ‘that are received, the happier the individual becomes, resulting in them feeling good about their selves. But this is a false reality where everything is perfect; there are no bad moments and no bad images. This type of reality can become very damaging for individuals who are already insecure and mentally ill.
This psychological drama will leave viewers thinking about and questioning their own social existence and existence of Social Comparison Theory.
The Sun Movie review “Everything about “Nightingale” is richly expressive and chillingly effective.”
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