While taking no great strides in storytelling or breaking any particular filmic convention, Start with Half is still a warming story of overcoming our own preconceptions and finding new avenues by which we can approach life at any stage. The strength of the piece lies in a few places: the chemistry and convincing performances of our two leads, and Katzman’s strong editorial understanding of visual metaphor and montage. We are able to discern so much about the lives and differences in perception that define each character, simply by visual information, that this film could easily have been wordless, and it would still be just as clear and effective. Though, the actual dialogue that does occur slides from the predictably quaint to self-aware and overly cheerful, even the beginning conflict between the two doesn’t last for long.
“…a thoroughly well-executed story brimming with its own brand of deadpan humor and warm earnestness.”
Wyner and Gibson are both fantastic and entrenched in their roles, and I could have easily viewed this as a borderline documentary between two family members if it had been filmed in a different style. Robert Louis Garza’s camerawork perfectly complements the editorial flair and is always concise to important action and the nuanced changes in character dynamics. There isn’t much about this film that isn’t refined or works poorly with all the other elements, and with such a small crew and production scope, that cohesion is fairly impressive and highly commendable.
While Start with Half will blow no one away by any means, it is a thoroughly well-executed story brimming with its own brand of deadpan humor and warm earnestness.
"…overcoming our own preconceptions and finding new avenues by which we can approach life..."