Eye For Film >> Movies >> Judas Kiss (2011) Film Review
Judas Kiss, directed by JT Tepnapa, is an American-teen-drama-sci-fi film about past failures and the chance to change the future. Oh, and it's also about the consequences of having sex with a younger version of yourself in order to finally realise what a moping, head-strong little shit you were back then... or something.
Zachary Wells is a washed-up film director and previous winner of the Keystone film festival's top directing prize, which through a quirk of fate he has been asked to judge 15 years later on. Through another quirk of fate, he finds himself judging a young man who shares his name and who has submitted the very film he won the competition for all those years ago (a film titled, you guessed it, Judas Kiss).
After a one-night-stand with said young man, Zach discovers that the boy is in fact himself from the past and that he has been sent to judge the competition as a means of preventing his earlier self from making the same mistakes he has. These revelations are provided by a frumpy ex-teacher of Zach's and a white-bearded old man, who's prescience gives the viewer the odd feeling he might be God (or Santa).
On paper, this strange blend of sci-fi and drama has all the potential to engage and provoke, though sadly here it is used only as the backdrop to worn and tedious sub-plots of teen love triangles, saccharine heart-to-hearts and cheesy, over-earnest confrontations. Sadder still, the tacked-on nature of Judas Kiss' sci-fi element leads to it becoming a point of embarrassment, with Zach's inability to recognise himself as a kid and subsequent self-sexual liaison going completely unexamined by the film's characters.
Though competently directed and acted (bar a few dozen too many pouts), Judas Kiss feels like an aggressively extended episode of Dawson's Creek or The OC, with vague sci-fi intentions smushed into the gaps between the drama. A little more thought put into the script might have helped make the film seem a little less throw-away.Reviewed on: 13 Nov 2011