The Portland, Ore.-set “The Texture of Falling” is an erotic enigma of a film, and as befuddling as its title. “The texture of falling” is a phrase that sounds cool but means nothing, and that’s a good description of this film as well. It’s beautifully shot by cinematographer, director, writer, producer and costar Maria Allred, but the elements don’t add up to anything in the long run. With its excessive slow-motion and its fractured narrative, it’s more like a music video than an actual movie.
The loose story follows two women, Sylvia (Allred) and Louisa (producer and costume designer Julie Webb) through the ups and downs of parallel relationships with men stepping out on their marriages. Sylvia explores the limits of a dominant-submissive sexual relationship with Michael (Benjamin Farmer), while Louisa falls hard for Luke (Patrick D. Green), who ensnares her in an affair while promising he’s separated.
The film looks amazing, but the writing is painfully pretentious and the acting beyond stiff and amateurish, so it’s impossible to gain a foothold into this story. It doesn’t help that the film slowly starts to become a meta reflection of itself, as Louisa, a filmmaker,starts to write and shoot a screenplay, mirroring her relationship with Luke.
“The Texture of Falling” eventually leaves the world of narrativized fiction, as the actors begin to play themselves on screen — Allred the director, Webb the producer. The whole endeavor is just honestly confounding.
‘The Texture of Falling’
Running time: 1 hour, 16 minutes
Playing: Starts Friday, Arena Cinelounge Sunset, Hollywood