At first glance it is easy to see why this film has been labeled as “9/11 the Musical” from some press outlets. Upon closer inspection however, it can be seen that Elizabeth Lucas’ film encompasses much more than just that. The film is really about the impact of loss, not only of loved ones, but also of identity. That this is related to the events of 9/11 is just a plot device. This could just as easily have been tied to the Columbine incident, or the Vietnam War. Setting the movie in a post-9/11 world keeps the characters current, and their situations all that more relevant.
Director Elizabeth Lucas crafted a fine film with heart and soul. The way each story played out shows her musical theater roots clearly, and this movie could easily be adapted for the stage. The musical pieces are very broad and may even have more of an emotional impact on the audience if they were sung out on stage. The music is infectious and I can see how the soundtrack would make a great addition to the sales of this film once it hits DVD.
Despite the somber tone of most of the movie, there is always the undercurrent of hope. Watching all these affected characters come together in the final scene of the movie was completely satisfying and really was the only way this film could have ended in my mind.
The visuals were well put together for the most part, with the only gripe being that some of the CGI images came off a bit simplistic and took me out of the scenes briefly. But suspension of disbelief prevails. Another confusing bit in the film is Etta’s storyline. To me it was always a bit unclear of what she lost in 9/11. Was it her father? This would explain her mother constantly moving from husband to husband, and her own inability to settle down. Or was it her mother? Are the conversations she’s having with her ‘mommy’ on her cell phone even actually taking place? While touching and often humorous, her story feels just a bit out of place from the rest.
The varying ways people deal with grief is well depicted and Lucas gives great examples of the multiple stages of the process and works them effortlessly into the narrative. This was obviously a well-researched film.
CLEAR BLUE TUESDAY is definitely an emotional roller-coaster of a film, and it is far more enjoyable to watch than to read about. Don’t let the subject matter surrounding this film keep you from watching it. You’ll be able to relate to these characters, and this story, even if you have not been affected by the events of 9/11.
CLEAR BLUE TUESDAY Review
FILM SYNOPSIS - Events of Sept. 11, 2001, have long-lasting effects on a sense of security for 11 New Yorkers.