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Saturday, May 18, 2024

Movies with Tarek – ‘All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt’

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The film opens with a scene of someone being taught how to fish. In that moment the instruction is strict yet encouraging. However, it is a moment of much deeper meaning that spans many decades and many lives. There is a pervasive feeling of loss and disconnect. There is sadness, frustration, cultural differences and confusion—that is All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt.

The Mississippi setting of the film is one where poverty and daily routines are a challenge. The film makes observations of life from the past and present. It portrays moments of light and darkness in the good times and the bad. Strong writing correlates well with the cinematography in creating a sense of dramatic irony. There is drama with purpose in All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt, however, the film leaves a trail of questions. What is the meaning behind the film’s focus on catching and preparing fish? What part of the drama serves the biggest purpose? The trail of hopelessness is in the form of a scavenger hunt for the good times for an individual in All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt.

The Mississippi setting of the film is one where poverty and daily routines are a challenge. The film makes observations of life from the past and present. It portrays moments of light and darkness in the good times and the bad. Strong writing correlates well with the cinematography in creating a sense of dramatic irony. There is drama with purpose in All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt, however, the film leaves a trail of questions. What is the meaning behind the film’s focus on catching and preparing fish? What part of the drama serves the biggest purpose? The trail of hopelessness is in the form of a scavenger hunt for the good times for an individual in All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt.

The director and writer Raven Jackson is poetic in her direction with All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt. The pacing may seem to blur in moments, but it makes sense in order to create a certain feeling for its audience. It helps the viewer feel the dramatics of All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt. Many times, the film flashes back to the lake where the fishing moment takes place. Most of the film feels like a blur of an artistic project trying too hard, but then the realization comes that the lake setting holds together everything in the film. The setting of the lake is thepersonification of Mack’s life. The location of the lakesymbolizes the themes of the film. It rains by the lake, it shines by the lake, the water is clear, yet deep. The lake is where the meaning of Mack’s life has a form and a life that is destined to be inspiring. It is spellbinding.

All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt is an experience of dramatics that may try too hard in moments. I did not entirely love the experience; I appreciated its art form. It is a film which requires a certain mindset to watch in that takes on more of a literary approach to its storytelling over that of a typical big screen movie. The experience of the film felt like a literature class because of its use of the lake in the film like literary device paralleling the dramatic portions of the film itself. Three out of four stars for All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt.

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Tarek Fayoumi
Tarek Fayoumihttp://movieswithtarek.com
Tarek Fayoumi is the creator and lead critic of movieswithtarek.com. He also contributes to Medium.com, is an approved critic of Bananameter, and a member of the Chicago Indie Critics (CIC) and Independent Film Critics of America.

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