Soothe Your Woes With Whiskey With 'Another Version of You'
December 19, 2019
Director Motke Dapp’s Another Version of You is a whiskey-soaked ride through a parallel universe as protagonist Diggsy Ellston searches for a place where his dream girl, Suzette, returns his feelings. It’s a great premise inspired by a novel Dapp penned before making the movie.
“I hadn’t seen a lot of parallel universe literature out there, and I loved the idea of doing something more intimate and personal, rather than focusing on the science aspect,” Dapp said.
“I did a few drafts of the novel — I even had some literary agents interested — but in the end I decided I really wanted to explore this as a film.”
Diggsy’s pain at the outset of the film is palpable as he loses Suzette to another man on her wedding day (even though he was clearly invited to the wedding). In the moment, Diggsy embraces his pain — and his flask — and leaves the newly married Suzette a string of awkward but painfully truthful voicemails instead of going to the wedding reception.
As one of the most emotionally resonant moments of the film, it makes it clear that losing this girl was inspired by real life.
“There was a girl in college who I had a crush on and asked out several times, always leading to a ‘not right now,’ or “the time just isn’t right,” or ‘we’re too good of friends.’ At the time, it was heartbreaking, but like all things, we parted ways and that was that,” Dapp said.
“But for Diggsy, this person was his sister’s best friend, and they grew up together, so he couldn’t just let her go. She was always right in front of him.”
Suzette remains even more in front of Diggsy when he has an encounter with an unusual man in a bar. The man hands Diggsy a key to alternate universes; what Diggsy does not yet know is once you enter the alternate universes you cannot escape. He also now cannot escape multiple versions of Suzette, and his different lives with her — there’s the Suzette he’s married to, manic pixie dream girl Suzette, dying Suzette, a universe where he has married someone else, but Suzette continues to torment him as a best friend — and in perhaps the best and most surprising turn of events, there’s a universe where Suzette and Diggsy’s sister fall madly in love.
To remain tormented by the woman you think is meant for you is head-spinning to be certain, so it’s no wonder Diggsy is often getting drunk in each universe. Whiskey is Diggsy’s poison of choice, and Dapp gave great care to the whiskey visuals in the film.
“I’m a big fan of the Buffalo Trace Distillery brands (Blanton’s, Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, Jeffers Creek, to name a few). Diggsy did not get to drink any of those because he was in a parallel universe where the owner of Buffalo Trace never started the company due to what he thought was an allergy to corn, but was actually just some mild food poisoning,” Dapp said.
“We had an awesome art department for the film, [and] every drink bottle.”
If you want to play a drinking game watching Another Version of You, drink when Diggsy drinks and you will get very, very drunk. One big bummer, though: it seems hangovers in alternate universes are possible.
Another Version of You is definitely for the lovesick, but it’s also for the optimistic, and for anyone who has ever chased a dream. And, it’s especially for those ready to go to the lengths of alternate universes to get what they need.
Written by: Lindsay StidhamLindsay holds an MFA in screenwriting from the American Film Institute. She has overseen two scripts from script to screen as a writer/ producer. SPOONER, starring Matthew Lillard (SLAMDANCE), and DOUCHEBAG (SUNDANCE) both released theatrically. Most recently Lindsay sold PLAY NICE starring Mary Lynn Rajskub. The series was distributed on Hulu. Recent directing endeavors include the Walla Walla premiering (and best screenplay nominated) TIL DEATH DO US PART, and the music video for Bible Belt’s Tomorrow All Today. Lindsay is currently working on an interactive romcom for the production company Effin' Funny, and a feature film script for Smarty Pants Pictures. Lindsay also currently works as an Adjunct Screenwriting Faculty member at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. You can follow her work here: https://lindsaystidham.onfabrik.com/