TRIBECA 2020 FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW! The New York City Subway is the busiest mass rapid transit system in the Western Hemisphere. Considering almost everyone is always in a rush to get to their destination, most people don’t interact with anyone, let alone acknowledge their existence. But Nika Fehmiu’s Look At Me exposes exactly how disconnected we’ve become as a society by playing out a scenario where the dithering lead is unable to figure out if a nonreactive man requires serious help.
On a New York City winter night, a woman in her mid-20’s spots a nonresponsive man (Connor Vasile) while waiting for her train. She tentatively observes the young man, who’s lifelessly sitting on the subway stairs and looking straight down.
“…a woman in her mid-20’s spots a nonresponsive man while waiting for her train.”
The fascinatingly hushed man wears a USA cap to conceal his face while he repeatedly spits at the ground. The woman hesitates but eventually calls 911. Surprisingly, the woman leaves before really knowing what state the man was in. She gets on her train, pops in her headphones, and is on her way to what I can only believe to be yoga class, considering she’s lugging around a yoga mat.
Anchored by a superb Hadley Robinson (Utopia, Little Women, and leading star in Amy Poehler’s upcoming Netflix film Moxie), her engrossingly frantic performance underscores exactly how ill-equipped we are in dealing with those who orbit around us every day. At first, she does seem to genuinely care about the man’s well-being, but then she leaves before the cops come to evaluate the situation.
Feet away from the scene is a red-haired person played by Juliette Alice Gobin, who assumes the role of the pseudo-social media activist. With a nose ring, a tight necklace, and her eyes completely glued to the screen, Gobin brings a tactile sense of insensibility and stillness to the character, never once taking off her headphones to give attention to the world around her.
"…a scenario where the dithering lead is unable to figure out if a nonreactive man is in need of serious help. "