6 Years (2015)

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“Look me in the eye, and tell me.”

Here’s a scenario for you: Game 7 of the World Series, bottom of the ninth, full count, go ahead run on third. Who do you want at the plate? Certainly it’d be your best hitter, the most confident and collected of the bunch, unaffected by the pressure of the moment. 6 Years tries to make a rehashed, recycled story of young lust into that kind of life-changing and make-or-break scope. And up to the batter’s box walks…the bat boy. This film is so bad, so ignominious to the genre, because it has the gall to point to left field for a home run when all it needed to do was get a hit. 6 Years strikes out looking, killing itself with a backwards k.

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Our ill-fated Romeo & Juliet are Melanie (Taissa Farmiga) and Dan (Ben Rosenfield). Melanie’s a college junior hoping to work in early childhood education. Meanwhile, Dan has an internship for a small record label. The high school sweethearts have been together for 6 years, hence the creative title. Melanie talks marriage and the future; Dan doesn’t. The film has no setup, no background into these two young adults or the bond that they have melded. The closest thing we get are scenes of them fighting or montage party shots ripped from a low-budget music video. Melanie drinks probably 75% of her time onscreen. Screw it, no need to show us why. Dan flirts at the office. Forget it, let’s not address his reasoning. It’s hard to have a relationship with a movie that hasn’t already made its own. I did have feelings for it though, none good. 6 Years is loathsome.

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The acting passes, even though Farmiga looks less like a college student and more like a 13-year-old; she’s miscast. Rosenfield is charming in a “meh” role. And while director/writer Hannah Fiddell may have made an awful movie, she manages to direct her young stars well, molding their performances to fit the themes of the story. It’s funny, how you can love a movie about hate and hate a movie about love. 6 Years really isn’t a love story though. Here is a romance made through the detached, myopic lens of the ones putting #WCW/#TBT/#MCM on Instagram every week. Of the Twitter stalkers and the Facebook zombies. The story shouts out, “I wanna know what love is. I want you to show me!” Then tilts its head down, pouring over the almost dead iPhone’s light, and waits for the answer. Judging by the script, Fiddell must have clicked on a Cosmo sex advice column or a Buzzfeed list of the “21 Best Lifetime Movies.” There’s a great wide world out there; 6 Years just doesn’t look up.

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If 6 Years weren’t so terrible, I’d suggest Drake Doremus, writer and director of 2011’s Like Crazy, sue for copyright infringement. This is a smudged photocopy. Heck, the male leads could be identical twins. Like Crazy is heartbreaking because it observes and follows a crucial rule. Stories like this need a rooted place of love, physical or emotional, that we watch grow or see torn apart. Instead, this film relies on co-dependency, and that certainly ain’t love. This is Like Crazy on pain meds, killing off all of the dirty realities necessary to be and feel alive. Maybe I should have just reviewed the other movie instead. Like the pseudo-romances of today’s out of sync and muddled mix of Generation Yers and Zers, 6 Years inspires frustration and laughter…not the good kind. Its addiction to melodrama and the maudlin leads to overdose, sending itself where it rightfully belongs: six feet under.

“This is so f***ing stupid.”

Rating: 0.5 out of 5

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