Evelyn review: Netflix documentary is not for the emotionally faint hearted

Evelyn review: Netflix documentary is not for the emotionally faint hearted

Mental illness has affected lives, families. Here filmmaker Orlando Von Einseidel recalls why and how his younger brother Evelyn committed suicide. Then tragedy that happened in 2004 had left a void in the heart of all his siblings and they start with a shot of a note addressed to their father from a medical examiner. He can barely control his outburst when he realizes that it was Evelyn's suicide note. Orlando and his siblings Robin, Gwennie come together to pay tribute to their brother Evelyn, but not with an official ceremony. The three siblings decide to hike across their favourite destinations in UK, something Evelyn would have loved to do. Most importantly, they do this to communicate with each other about how they feel about the death of Evelyn. Their mother, Johanna Thonrycroft also join them. They remember the times when Johanna raised them all on her own without support from their father who moved back to Germany. In her memory, Evelyn remained a happy child who was diagnosed with schizophrenia after graduation. Time and again, she engages herself with thoughts of how she went wrong and whether she could have done something to help Evelyn. The siblings later meet their father Andreas, who is now married to Harriet. Despite the separation, Andreas always had the softest spot for Evelyn. However, he isn't welcomed especially by Gwennie, because at some point Andreas manages to make everything all about his life and death. There, the tension begins and he can feel emotionally left out by his children. Even Evelyn's best friends, Jack Binnie and Leon Oldstrong feel more welcomed as they share their own traumatic experiences of dealing with the death in their families, which happened before Evelyn parted ways with them. For most of the part, the siblings come together to connect and sort out their feelings. Evelyn mainly explores what siblings go through when they lose one of them. It only made me want to value the presence of my siblings and even cousins. Evelyn is not a film for the faint-hearted. It is a documentary that has more of a feature film feel.

Ratings: 3/5


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