A great first feature by director Henry Alex Rubin.
by Nav Qateel
During the entire runtime of Disconnect, I sat literally rapt, with hardly a moment going by that I took my eyes from the screen. Henry Alex Rubin is credited with two documentaries, with Murderball gaining him a well-deserved Oscar nomination. Thanks to some of his docu-filmmaking style here, Rubin uses it to devastating effect, while we follow several stories that intertwine beautifully. Disconnect is also filled with references that everyone living in todays social-media-led society, will understand deeply and should appreciate.
Sixteen-year-old Kyle (Max Thieriot) works in the sex industry, selling private performances over a webcam, on a lucrative sex website. Reporter Nina Dunham (Andrea Riseborough) is looking for a story, when she gets chatting to Kyle during an online session. When she learns Kyle is way younger than she first realises, this gives her an idea for her story; an on-camera exposé.
Two kids decide to play a very mean prank on a kid who is going through the things young teenage, depressed boys go through. Because Ben Boyd (Jonah Bobo) is a loner, Jason Dixon (Colin Ford, The Dome), and Frye, decide to pretend to be a pretty girl on Facebook, but after Ben posts an explicit picture of himself, it ends up on every single phone in school.
Cindy (Paula Patton) and Derek Hull (Alexander Skarsgård), are trying to deal with losing their baby, and Cindy has been going online to chat on a site for others also going through the grieving process. As well as mostly neglecting Cindy, Derek is also having difficulty at work and has just found out they are now broke, thanks to a cybercriminal. Using private investigator Max Dixon (Frank Grillo), they find out where the thief lives. Derek soon learns the wheels of justice are very slow because they’re already swamped with so much cybercrime. This pushes Derek into wanting to take matters into his own hands.
As mentioned, the stories intertwine perfectly, and all appears very natural, thanks to, not only great direction from Rubin, but the way each of the characters were brought to life, by a brilliant cast. Indeed, the cast were chosen well, each playing to their strengths, allowing for very convincing, realistic performances.
Disconnect is a must see.