Nicole Quinn has written a hauntingly beautiful love story that transcends time and space. Racing Daylight has an unusual opening with frenzied music playing over the quiet photographs of homes and places in Cedarsville going back four or five generations. Cedarsville is a quiet observer gently protecting the resident's history and their secrets. Sadie Stokes returns to Cedarsville to take care of her aging grandma; they are the last two surviving Stokes in Cedarsville. The refrain is: There have always been Stokes in Cedarsville. Very early we learn that Sadie has always believed she would go insane. She has been experiencing hallucinations, but she tells no one preferring to just let it happen. Sadie discovers that it is freeing to not fight insanity. Sadie is shy and lonely and would like to reach out to a childhood friend, Henry, who always seems to be around when she needs him. One day Henry tells her of a very old letter he found tucked into the wall of a shed on her property. When she reads it Sadie discovers it was written to Anna a Stokes ancestor. Things begin to change for Sadie upon reading the letter. Her hallucinations are becoming interactive which makes you wonder are they hallucinations or is she being possessed and pulled out of time by the spirit of Anna? Except for the chaotic music in the opening you'll find the music is beautiful floats along with the babbling brook, buzzing insects and summer songbirds you can almost feel cool afternoon breezes as you walk along with Sadie in her travels. The characters are wonderful and funny, especially Henry, and they help to tell Sadie's story. Just when you think you have Sadie's story figured out... There are many twists and turns in this 300 year old ghost story. I will be adding this to my personal collection.
1 out of 1 people found the following review useful: Metaphysical Romance, 24 July 2012
Once you understand Racing Daylight is a metaphysical romance, not really a ghost story, it becomes a simple, lovely little gem of a movie; quite easy to follow. It is about a group of people who inhabit the same space in two different times. Melissa Leo's Sadie returns to the home of her childhood to care for her bedridden grandmother. This people of the town have, as she is told often enough, 'always lived here'. The town seems to be what some people call a thin place. Lost and lonely Sadie begins to move in and out of her time and that of her civil war ancestor, Anna.
The story is lyrical and romantic, told through exquisite performances by Melissa Leo, David Strathairn, Giancarlo Esposito and a superb supporting cast. Racing Daylight does come off as a little stagy at times; the sets and cinematography are basic, almost dogme-ish. While I suspect some of the spareness is due to budget constraints, some of that choice is central to director Nicole Quinn's vision: the framing, sets and costumes convey the fluidity of time.
Racing Daylight was a pleasant surprise early on a sleepless morning.