Directed by: Eric Gravel
Distributed by: Music Box Films
Written by Jeff Sparks
In “Full Time” Laure Calamy stars as Julie, a single mother struggling to raise her children on the low income she makes as a maid. When she finds herself barely afloat financially she begins searching for a new job during a transit strike that throws her everyday life into chaos. When the strike occurs Julie begins waking up in the early hours of the morning long before the sun comes up to take her children to her disgruntled babysitter before making the trek into the city. As each day goes by less trains, buses, and cabs are available as the strike grows larger. Finding transportation each morning is trickier than the last as she stands in seemingly endless lines in the dark waiting for a seat to become available. When public transportation fails she resorts to hitchhiking to make it to her job that she struggles to maintain. Besides arriving late every day, her coworkers and managers no longer trust her as it has become obvious she is looking for a different job. After work, means of transportation are even scarcer than in the morning, often leaving her on foot to make it to job interviews. Julie doesn’t make it to pick up her kids until late at night when she takes them home and passes out before repeating the same hectic day again and again.
“Full Time” is one of those rare films that mesmerizes you not because of its story or characters but because of the white-knuckle ride that it puts you through. I could see some writing it off as ‘”Uncut Gems” with buses but “Full Time’s” run-and-gun style makes it much more than that. As Julie sprints and darts down the sidewalks and alleyways, the shaky camera and intense musical score complement her desperation as she races against the clock every second of every day. Without being a very deep character, Calamy brings Julie to life in a raw performance that is focused on the extreme level of energy that her character has exercised in this frantic chapter of her life. Julie is a mother who is doing everything in her power to give her kids a better life but she’s doing it on her own terms. If that means scrapping and clawing just to get a ride home or sprinting across the city to make it to her crummy job then that is what she is going to do. It’s the frenetic and unrelenting demonstration of this that makes “Full Time” one of the better films of the year.
“Full Time” Trailer