We walk into Adam Morse’s fantastical film Lucid on the heels of one fair headed dame in a glamourous chic club, only to be rudely awakened into the world of our main protagonist, whose own life seems to be drastically contradictory. Zel (Laurie Calvert) lives a bleak, lonely life that is further hindered by his own social insecurities and anxiety. This of course is not helped with a disparaged mother who has stopped the handouts Zel uses to sleepwalk through his life. As well as a new domineering boss who seems to think he’s walked straight off the set of a mafioso movie and is as subtle as a bull in a china shop.
Enter the eccentric Elliot (Billy Zane), who appears like a benevolent savior that forces the intervention he believes is long overdue. Here is where our story kicks off, as Elliot guides Zel into a sleep treatment, lucid dreaming, that he touts will fix Zel, provide him with the confidence he needs to be more than the loser he believes himself to be. How apropos that a mystical doctor, self-proclaimed though he may be, appears like fate at his own door and peddles the very thing Zel was coveting. Of course, after the embarrassments and regrets of his day, Zel is up for anything to fight his way out of the dreary reality his decisions have taken him to.
The premise of this whole film rides on the idealistic concept of lucid dreaming. Living your dream consciously awake, the way you hope it to be and the decisions you make having the fail safe of being imaginary. Visualize your way to success, as it were.
All very inspiring, but what happens when reality hits and fate, the cruel mistress, intervenes to causally toy with out lives? Adam Morse has created a futuristic visual of this concept of battling with the duality of what is real and what isn’t. In a dream, we can be whoever we want to be, damn the consequences, but the reality of who we are is what we must be able to face our own destiny.
Adam Morse has created a futuristic visual of this concept of battling with the duality of what is real and what isn’t.
In Zel’s dream, he finds himself projecting his desire to reach out to his beautiful neighbor and become a man who holds such a bold, strong authority that his brass, harsh boss respects. Which knowing the kind of man he is and the only man he respects would be a man like himself, Dream Zel seems to emulate him, both in his style and the bravado. We all are guilty of having our fantasies, of furtively wishing for the actualization of desires that burn quietly in all of us. There’s a famous line from French philosopher Jean Paul Sartre’s 1944 play, “No Exit’’. – ‘Hell is other people’. As Zel’s worlds become increasingly more convoluted and interweaved, the truth behind those words is everything. We can build a dream into a fantasy, but to make that fantasy a reality we must keep in mind the rest of the world and other people’s dreams and desires.
The reality is we cannot live within our own minds, that we share our lives, no matter how isolated we seem to be. Often, dreams do feed into reality, but only in the context of building a tangible fantasy. Our ancestors dreamed a future for their families, and eventually, we live in the reality they dreamed for us.
Lucid is well worth a watch!
LUCID will be released September 7th and will be available on the following platforms.
Virgin / iTUNES / Amazon / Xbox / PlayStation / Microsoft/Sky
Waad Ahmed, Film and TV Business