By Christopher Tobutt
All In, All Out is the name of a movie, written directed and produced by ex-Miss Cayman Islands Caitlin Tyson, who recently graduated from an acting school in New York. She has appeared in several other local movies. All In, All Out recently premiered in the Bayshore Mall in George Town, with lots of guests came, many of them young artists and musicians. “The film is a fun and edgy end-of-summer flick similar to American Pie of Spring Breakers,” Ms Tyson explained. “I wanted to showcase a new side of the Caribbean we don’t really get to see a lot. We have a really bustling nightlife scene that you never see. I was inspired by the extended music videos of the 90s and early 2000’s where the storyline supplemented the music and we have so many amazing musicians here that I wanted to really feature them throughout the film. So it is shot and produced 100 percent in the Cayman Islands.”
The film was shot at the end of 2017 for three full days before undergoing several weeks of editing prior to release. Lots of people helped and gave up their time and talent to help make the movie, with drone footage provided by Monica Walton and Bruce Gordon and Joel Lawson on production and camera operations.
Actors included Lisani Sambula from the Cayman Islands, as well as Kimisha Edwards, Destry Bell and Faith Robinson, and Caitlin Tyson. The whole movie featured Caymanian musicians providing the soundtrack throughout, including Richie T, Rico Rolando, Josh pearl, Shameka Clarke, Yung fusion and Vassco.
The film started off with a group of four friends wondering what to do with their evening. Although they are together in the same room, they seem separated from one another, caught up in their own worlds. “Are we going out?” one of them asks the others. Nobody seems to care too much, just as long as something happens to distract them from reality for a while. It’s the end of summer, and expectations for the evening are a little too high. It could be that all of their summers have gone perfectly, but we begin to feel there are lots of negative undercurrents threatening to surface, too.
The sense of disappointment grows as we follow them to various clubs and bars. One of the young women seems to be looking for a lover who doesn’t show. She wants her summer to end like a fairy tale, but we know by this time that this just isn’t going to happen. The others are also depending a bit too hard on the evening ahead to fix their internal broken narratives and give them the happy ending they crave. It’s no good, because life isn’t a fairy tale, although we always try do our best. We drink, we dance, we flirt, or we make ourselves sick smoking cigarettes. Anything, really, to take our mind off the brutality of the way things really are.
There is lots of edgy, footage of people dancing a bit too close, and invading others’ personal space out of a sense of insatiable, desolate soul-hunger. You feel things are going to erupt, and it they do. The dark sense of foreboding breaks like a storm as a fight suddenly begins. But It’s not a neat Hollywood punch-up. It’s a messy, all-too realistic pathetic fight, which starts with someone pushing someone over, like a bunch of bad kids in a playground.
In the last scene things are at least part-way resolved by all the friends back together again, talking over what happened early one morning on the beach. Nothing is ever the same after a fight, and things have changed, but the fact that everyone laughs and grins leaves you feeling a little bit disturbed, because surely this collective affirmation that everything is ‘OK again’ cannot be completely true. But the ending is in-keeping with the ambiguous and slightly disorientating feeling created by the movie.