Last night I watched Ink and totally fell in love with this movie. Primarily because, while the basic story (father needs to reconnect to what’s important and save his daughter and, by doing so, himself) is neither subtle nor original, the world that writer/director Jamin Winans creates—a world where our dreams come from invisible but actual storytellers and our nightmares from equally invisible but malevolent incubi—feels fresh and unique. Also, the movie ignores any number of conventional storytelling structures, letting itself unfold with a dreamlike structure and pace, particularly in the first half of the film. I was reminded of City of Lost Children, not so much for the story or the cinematography, but for how richly developed the world of the movie is and just how much I wanted to go back to that world and explore it through other stories.
In a way, Ink is about the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves: the ways in which we make ourselves brave or cowardly, strong or weak; the narratives we present to others in hopes of hiding our flaws and our fears. I could talk about the acting or the visuals or the small moments of joy and sorrow that just feel right and not at all forced stereotypical movie languages, but most of all I simply want to say that if you have an ounce of poetry inside you, if you want to see into a new world (or into our world in a new way), or if you want to see a beautifully crafted movie, you should watch Ink. And soon.