Fireworks (2023)

Fireworks (2023)

This somber one-room drama delves into suicide and redemption with a time-loop twist

7.2

Movie

Indonesia
Indonesian
Drama, Science Fiction, Thriller
2023
HERWIN NOVIANTO
Hanggini Purinda Retto, Imelda Therinne, Marsha Timothy
104 min

TL;DR

Going forward, I will watch fireworks ONLY on TV.

What it's about

Four strangers meet in a group chat and decide to commit suicide together, but the plan goes awry and they are forced to confront their own reasons for wanting to die.

The take

Even with its morale apparent early in the film, Fireworks marries its mental health/loneliness discussion with a "locked room"-type mystery and the cosmic loop of a group suicide attempt gone wrong. It does take care not to glamourize suicide (or needlessly persevering through struggles), but it teeters between virtue signaling and the sincere reminder to reach out to others for help. With anxiety, hopelessness, grief, and redemption at its core, the film still tugs on the heart even though it pulls away from ruminating on the more intense emotions and thoughts that aren't easily dismissed in a single (even if endless) encounter. 

What stands out

Hanggini, playing the sole teenager in the group, delivers a great performance balancing feeling isolated by her troubles and the temperament to push back against the adults belittling her. Despite their intention to dissuade her, the film gives her agency and rationality, breaking up the sometimes stilted hypocrisy of "adults that know it all."

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