2023 Sundance Film Festival: Sometimes I Think About Dying movie review

PARK CITY, UTAH - JANUARY 19: (L-R) Dave Merheje, Parvesh Cheena, Brittany O'Grady, Rachel Lambert, Daisy Ridley and Bree Elrod attend the 2023 Sundance Film Festival "Sometimes I Think About Dying" Premiere at Library Center Theatre on January 19, 2023 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Unique Nicole/Getty Images)
PARK CITY, UTAH - JANUARY 19: (L-R) Dave Merheje, Parvesh Cheena, Brittany O'Grady, Rachel Lambert, Daisy Ridley and Bree Elrod attend the 2023 Sundance Film Festival "Sometimes I Think About Dying" Premiere at Library Center Theatre on January 19, 2023 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Unique Nicole/Getty Images) /
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The 2023 Sundance Film Festival is off to a strong start, and my coverage continues with looking at the Daisy Ridley-led film, Sometimes I Think About Dying. The movie was one of my most anticipated movies of the festival. But, does it live up to the hype? Let’s dive in.

Sometimes I Think About Dying follows Fran, who likes to think about dying, and makes the new guy at work laugh, which leads to dating and more, now, the only thing standing in their way is Fran herself. The film was directed by Rachel Lambert and stars Daisy Ridley, Dave Merheje,

When we meet Fran, she’s working her everyday job that she doesn’t seem to love (relatable). However, upon coming come home from work, you can tell how much is uneventful or unfulfilling it is as before she even puts her stuff down, she pours a glass of wine.

Next, we see Fran’s co-worker Carol celebrating her retirement with the company. Then, after a chain of events, we meet Robert, who is new to town and taking over the position. An incredibly awkward moment follows where everyone has to introduce themselves and their favorite foods.

"I’m Fran and I like Cottage Cheese"

Fran’s awkwardness matches Robert’s overzealous personality in a way that maybe shouldn’t work, but it gets Fran out of her comfort zone, including going on a bit of date to the movies. We continue to explore the interesting dynamic between Fran and Robert. It’s funny to watch the two because they couldn’t be more opposite, but the intrigue of each other keeps them coming back.

The Sometimes I Think About Dying script is impactful and emotional

The script and the movie hit me on a deeply personal level. We see Fran living life like we are “supposed to.” She works her job, is good at it, and tries to be social when she doesn’t want to. However, it’s deeper than that, often whether at her job, home or even in traffic, she envisions being dead. I would lie if this weren’t relatable as someone who, time and time again, has seen these types of visions. Unfortunately, we feel stuck in place far too often in this world and struggle to find that more profound meaning of what we should be doing.

We all hope that our life has some meaningful impact, but most of us were raised to understand that you go to work, have a family, and when you retire, you can have fun. In how the script was written, we see Carol face that post-retirement when she delivers one of the most heartbreaking monologues we will see all year, highlighting how wrong that theology is. Marica DeBonis’s delivery here is something special that will be stuck in my brain all year.

Since Star Wars, Ridley has been looking for a project to stand out, and I believe this is the one. Fran isn’t full of many words but the words she does say make you feel empathy with the idea of what Fran is going through. Ridley embodies this role to perfection. Now, Robert, played by David Merhje, is the perfect balance within this story to play this comedic role. I’ve always been a fan of Merhje, but this is the best work to date. I hope to see him featured in many more films in the future.

I will say this film won’t be for everyone as the pacing is a tad slow. While it was right up my alley, I don’t think some will be willing to give it the chance it deserves, but I hope they do because the story shows how one person can breathe life into you and change your life forever.

Overall, Sometimes I Think About Dying is a gut-wrenching look at what life is “supposed to” be like. The script is impactful and emotional and floored me. Daisy Ridley and Dave Merheje give the performances of their career. I loved this movie.

Next. 6 movies to watch (and 3 to skip) in February. dark