'Antisocial/Distant' vividly portrays the feeling of isolation during lockdowns
The worldwide pandemic has affected nearly everyone in the world.
Brian Speer’s Antisocial/Distant is a film that explores the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic with a primary focus on the psychological toll it has had on people around the globe.
The film follows an unnamed young man through a few months of the pandemic, during which he becomes increasingly lonely and anti-social. Like most of us, at the start of the pandemic the protagonist lives his daily life secluded from friends and family. However, with mass lockdowns resulting in people not venturing outside anymore, he begins to actually question his decision to abstain from social interactions.
After contracting the virus, the symptoms of the disease coupled with the isolation that the lockdown inevitably causes, plunge him into loneliness and depression.
Speer’s film features a limited cast consisting of Haley Aho and Csavion Harring, and Speer himself, who acts in the lead role of the film. The stripped down cinematography of the film is reflective of the subject matter, adding a subtle degree of claustrophobia. Repeated shots of his mundane daily routines and the barren nature of the apartment our protagonist is forced to spend most of his time in, help to convey a strong sense of isolation, which in turn is also cleverly enhanced by the almost total absence of a soundtrack.
Despite the short running time and micro-budget nature of the film- which has Speer take on the role of actor, writer, editor, director and producer- Antisocial/Distant manages to vividly portray the feeling of near-claustrophobic isolation that many people have felt during extended periods of lockdown in pandemic-ridden 2020, making it a very relevant and even personal experience.