In the romantic drama The Departure, men behave badly toward women in an uncomfortable way that maybe should be going out of style by now. Writer/director Merland Hoxha shows a steady hand at filmmaking in his debut feature, hitting every mark in excellent fashion, except in his treatment of women in the script.
The story introduces us to two couples, one in the early stages of dating, the other paired for some time. Nate (Grant Wright Gunderson) and Jessica (Kendall Chappell) are planning to move in together. They are young, ambitious, beautiful people in L.A. living charmed lives as if the world is made for them. Maybe it is.
“Nate is so insecure he suspects her of cheating…”
John (Austin Lauer) and Amber (Olivia Lemmon) have dated for a few weeks and do not seem to fit together as snugly as Nate and Jessica. Amber pays too much attention to her phone in a restaurant to suit John, and she’s vegan, which he has an issue with. Still, they seem to communicate openly and honestly, until he ghosts her for a couple of weeks and then comes back around as if nothing happened.
Nate is a sales guy who loves that special “sales” vibe. He’s good at it. His boss, Bruce (Jon Briddell), decides he’s so good at it that he wants to send him to New York for six months to sort out the company’s branch there as manager. Nate promises Jessica they’ll pick up cohabitating plans when he returns. She is disappointed but sees it as a minor setback to their bright future.
"…men behave badly toward women in an uncomfortable way..."