Hello Again is insane.
It’s quite something to go into a film like this blind. I knew very little: only that it is a musical following various loosely connected pairs of lovers in New York City ― like an all-singing, all-dancing Love, Actually.
What I expected was something light, airy and decidedly PG… so you can imagine that I was surprised when the first vignette ― set in 1901 ― begins the film with a prostitute having (rather anatomically incorrect) song-sex with a returning soldier.
It doesn’t stop there.
Hello Again is, I believe, cinema’s first sexually transmitted musical.
In that first encounter, the prostitute sings to her customer, while his speech remains strictly non-musical. Yet that same actor returns in the second 1944-set vignette, and this time his every word is sung. The film goes on like this, as if music is being passed down the through the decades, it’s transition prompted not by love but by sex.
Hello Again has everything you could want in a movie: dominatrix nurses, bathtub masturbation, Audra McDonald as an autotuned popstar named ‘She’, the Titanic… and all of this with singing. All of it. It’s an object of awe, to be gazed at like one might gaze into a kaleidoscope. Imagine seeing The Room for the first time ― except it’s a musical with a bigger budget and (slightly) better actors ―and you’ll be close to picturing what it’s like to watch Hello Again… but nothing could prepare you for the real thing.
So watch Hello Again. Watch it with your friends, and exchange alarmed and bewildered glances as if to say: ‘Are you seeing this?’ ‘Is this real?’ ‘How did this happen?’
Hello Again may well be the worst movie I’ve seen all year. Then again, I’m not sure it’s fair to classify it as a ‘movie’. It is a collection of sounds and images, sure ― but none of them compute. It is a carnival of horrifying delights, here to be gawked at. Believe me: you will gawk.
Hello Again will make its world premiere at the 25th Raindance Film Festival on September 24th, followed by a repeat screening on September 30th
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