That’s pretty much the reaction this “documentary” leaves you with. “Losing Lusk” is part documentary/part music video. The narration serves as the soundtrack and is essentially a spoken word poem about the plight of a small town in the lowest population county in the lowest population state; Lusk, Wyoming.
This narration is digitally altered quite heavily (distorted, played backwards, etc.) and mixed into a bass heavy electronic music track. This music is then set to images of the near ghost town that is Lusk and is occasionally interrupted as locals tell depressing stories about the slow death of their town.
While this may sound like a novel idea, the finished product is more aggravating than anything else. There is a real story to be told here. How does this town support itself? How did it get this way? Where is it going? Unfortunately, all of these questions are glossed over in favor of awkwardly written pseudo-philosophical musings set to a dance beat. I care about this town, but it seems the film does not.
One thing this short succeeds at beyond a shadow of a doubt is its visuals. This is a beautiful film. Shots of the sun setting over the endless Wyoming plains or seeing the weathered face of a seasoned cowboy provide at least some of the emotional content the film otherwise avoids.