“I was thinking I could be made into a leather jacket.” Kate Lyn Sheil’s Amy tells her friend Jane (Jane Adams) early on in Amy Seimetz’s new high concept film, She Dies Tomorrow. Living in her newly purchased Los Angeles home, Amy, we learn, is afflicted with a conviction that she will die the following day. It soon becomes clear that this conviction is contagious, as Jane succumbs to the same belief, before spreading it onwards to her nearest and dearest.
The film reunites Seimetz — an actor, writer, director and producer, known most recently as the co-creator of the terrific television version of The Girlfriend Experience — with Sheil and Kentucky Audley, the leads in her last feature, the moody Floridian neo-noir Sun Don’t Shine. With She Dies Tomorrow, Seimetz builds on the ominous, lyrical tones of that film, borrowing sci-fi and horror imagery to depict viral ripples of existential despair.
It is a film of insinuations and ellipses. Vivid blues and reds flash across the faces of characters as they realise their impending demise. Some act out, others seek isolation, desolation or loved ones, or even speak hidden truths. Seimetz could be darkly suggesting the harmful social spread of dread and depression, or even representing the toxic viral potential of technology. She Dies Tomorrow is unflinchingly ambiguous, but it leaves a fascinating mark.