Jamie Marks is Dead (2014) trailer - directed and adapted for the screen by Carter Smith, from the novel One For Sorrow by Christopher Barzak
Rarely do films about gay teens break the moody coming out story and romance genre, but Jamie Marks does just that, creating a supernatural mystery and pseudo romance along the way.
When the body of a school outcast, Jamie Marks (Noah Silver) is found dead, Adam (Cameron Monaghan) is filled with a somber feeling he can’t quite place. Nobody really knew Jamie, all he knew was that Jamie was a boyscout and regularly bullied. Out of curiosity Adam starts meeting up with Gracie, the girl who found the body. When Gracie begins to see Jamie standing in the distance she warns Adam
to stay away from him “you can’t give him what he needs.” Adam does just the
opposite, insisting he can help him. In life Jamie was in love with Adam, and in death Jamie is obsessed with Adam.
The film creates a strange relationship between the two boys which seems romantic but remains platonic. It is apparent that Jamie has feelings for Adam but is not clear whether Adam feels the same. Adam develops a sexual relationship with Gracie so it is possible that he could be bisexual. Whichever it is Jamie seems to have a pull over him.
Jamie Marks is filled to the brim with macabre visuals. The films aesthetic is essentially a rainy day. While it gives off a very dreary feel it still comes across stunningly beautiful and photographically pleasing. Everything feels cold and somber.
Story-wise it is an incredibly endearing story that is just a bit hard to follow at times. I would suggest reading the novel beforehand as it makes the movie that much better, knowing all the bits that couldn’t make it to screen. Jamie Marks just wants to be remembered, by anyone possible. He seems to crave it with every fiber of his being and he wants Adam to be the one to remember him.
In the end we’re given a dreary tale, a teen romance and look into true loneliness, isolation and how small gestures could make a huge difference.