3.5 Stars
Year Released: 2002
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 69 minutes
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On the surface, “Pull Out” is a simplistic documentary where director/writer Jyllian Gunther revisits old boyfriends to find out what went wrong with their relationships. She also interviews her father for his thoughts on the matter. (Her mother died while Gunther was a little girl, and it is that death that ultimately seems to be subconscious driving force in Gunther’s life.)
As mentioned, this seems simplistic. Dig deeper, however, and you encounter a wonderfully deep and rich film about the motivations of people and their actions. It also looks at responsibility and destiny, and is quite possibly one of the most introspective documentaries of the year. It could have gone further, though. Or could it?
By the end of the film, you’ll be wishing Gunther would go a bit deeper into herself and really rip out some raw emotions, but then you realize she may not be ready yet. She understands that she is still looking for someone to fill the voids in her life, and she knows that may not be the best route to go, but she continues down that road nonetheless. Maybe because it’s comfortable. Maybe because it’s habit. Either way, any film that begins by getting viewers to examine their own past relationships and ends with them questioning their own motives in life deserves a look, even if it makes them wish they were given more insights into Gunther. But then again, isn’t that what life is all about? Wanting more and never having enough?

Posted on March 28, 2004 in Reviews by

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