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Exactly 100 years after the Armenian Genocide, a theatre director stages a play to bring the ghosts of the past back to life.

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1915 movie full length review - Sinks Under Its Own Self Importance

I had absolutely no idea what this movie was about before I watched it .

Having a quick glance at the IMDb page I found out the titular name refers to the date of the Armenian genocide carried out in 1915 by Turkey and of a theatre director putting on a play one hundred years later , A weighty topic but one I had nailed down as a meta-fictional story within a story , a feeling reinforced by an actor called Simon Abkarian playing an obsessed director called Simon directing an actress called Angela who is played by an Armenian actress called Angela Sarafyan. Like I said possible meta-fiction but after seeing 1915 I'm really none the wiser after seeing the film than I was before I saw it


As expected the early part of the story revolves around the dictatorial obsession of a theatre bigwig of making a controversial play centered around the first genocide of the 20th Century . Simon demands the story is told and he's taking no prisoners with his cast or with the protesters outside . This isn't really the focus of the film and as it continues it gives a hint that there might be a curse upon the play with the occasional freak accident happening which suggested supernatural forces at play but then it's revealed that the truth behind the accidents are more humanist in nature . The film then takes a sharp turn with a kind of love triangle with Simon . Angela and an actor of Turkish descent who plays a Turkish officer which suggests it might be mutating in to a psychological horror of sorts along the lines of Aronofsky's BLACK SWAN but this as far as I know doesn't materialise ( I'll explain that in a second) and instead deliberately or unintentionally 1915 gives the impression of what a terrible life it is running a theatre company and being a thespian and no one out in the real world appreciates the blood , sweat and tears actors and directors endure in order to bring real life issues to the masses . Hmmm I wasn't aware the masses went to the theatre and they'd rather be in a multiplex cinema chain stuffing their faces with overpriced pizza and popcorn watching a film where the most important member in front of or behind the camera is the guy who does the CGI . Unfortunately by bringing up such a weighty , important topic of genocide 1915 seems to collapse under it's own importance and one wonders when Simon moans "Actors are really ghosts" if this is meant metaphorically or literally as the film ends in a confused ambiguous manner . I don't think I'll be seeing a film with a more confused message than 1915 in 2015