Synopsis: ‘Dissonance’ follows a late-blooming Millennial whose world is upended after reconnecting with an overbearing friend from the past. Upon leaving a heated basketball game, Jesse catches the blowback from Mark’s petty confrontation, which he narrowly escapes with his life. The next two days follow Jesse through his internal angst as he tries to reconcile what transpired.
Michael Naizu (Mark)
Jayson Reyes (Bobby)
Charlene Miranda (Gina)
Diane Foster (Catalina)
The journey to ‘Dissonance’ came by way of an exploration into how quickly an impertinent exchange can result in catastrophe. I heard a story about a young man’s verbal altercation blowing back on his friend when he ran into the unknown victim later that evening. Fortunately, nothing harmful ensued, but I couldn’t stop playing out the setup for what could have been. All too often, petty arguments escalate into fights in bars or at sporting events; a victim gets hit too hard, in the wrong spot, or too excessively, resulting in brain damage or even death. I became fascinated by how one internalizes such traumatic, accidental events.
This notion of retaliation as honor is a shortsighted alpha phenomenon. Fight compilation videos spread like wildfire across the internet as entertainment; fighters beating each other senseless while spectators often act as instigators and recorders, rather than diffusors. Wading into the bullying epidemic plaguing today’s youth, social media can serve as an accelerated distribution platform affecting shame, embarrassment, or degradation, resulting in unfathomable tragedies such as school shootings and live streamed suicides. The collision of Jesse and Mark’s opposing forces in ‘Dissonance’ provides a crude glimpse into just how unfriendly a friendship can be as this film takes place in the interim from when tragedy strikes before the truth is revealed.
Cinema’s capabilities extend far beyond entertainment. It holds the power to educate, to challenge perceptions by exploring alternative perspectives, and to incite critical discourse. Through dramatic character-driven narratives, like ‘Dissonance,’ I am able to probe and present the complex layers of the human condition.
Rafi Jacobs is a filmmaker and experimental video artist based in Los Angeles, CA. He draws on tableaux and documentary conventions while investigating the subversion of socially normative behavior like drug addiction, the abject, and deconstructing the archetype of masculinity as it pertains to class, religion, and family.
Jacobs formed Koss Market Films in 2017, inspired by his great-grandfather’s market in 1930’s Detroit.