Everyone's Going to Die is the type of British film the industry desperately needs. Taking inspiration from a wide array of influences, the indie comedy written and directed by the collective known as Jones feels in both tone and character like an American independent film. That's because, with its striking minimalist aesthetic and DIY mentality Everyone's Going to Die creates a distinctive visual and narrative style that feels more genuine than the established product you'd expect to see churned out of a BBC or Film 4 production.

Chronicling the fleeting meeting of self-confessed two-bit gangster Ray and conflicted family disappointment Melanie, the importance of time, shown through a superb series of juxtapositions between private intimate moments and the mundanity of everyday life, becomes absolutely integral to the film at large. By knowing when to pry on their most intimate moments and when to pull back to relish in the awkward fumbling of two people who are just getting to know each other, Jones is able to weave a sense of heartfelt poignancy into even the most unassuming of exchanges.

Consequently, it's this central structure of naturalistic dialogue being mixed with a sense of fantastical surrealism that makes the film feel so much more like an American production than a British one. Although the location is in fact a British town, the movie is purposefully shot with a sense of ambiguous space, resulting in a universal tale which could essentially be taking place anywhere, as the visually diverse seaside setting drives home the creeping isolation and dislocation felt by both main characters. This disconnect from any obvious location adds a sort of fractured, dreamlike flow to the proceedings, allowing for more grand cinematic and stylised overtones to what's essentially a rather simple narrative.

However, even with Jones' ability to weave more fantastical elements into the plot, it's not like the film suddenly turns to elaborate dream sequences or obvious symbolism to drive home its humanistic themes. At its heart, the film takes great influences from the likes of Richard Linklater's Before series, as its preoccupation with the idea that it's the most fleeting moments that impact lives in the most profound way thrives at the centre of the picture. Even then, although the narrative content between the two directors are similar, Jones relies on small touches in both the story and cinematography to detach the film from reality in a way Linklater's pictures rarely ever do, a technique which consequently establishes Everyone's Going to Die as a distinctive and original piece of work.

Although these visual flairs are what sets apart Jones' flick from similar movies in the genre, the stylistic sophistication on show comes as a huge surprise considering the picture was made on a mere £65,000 budget. Helped in no small part by the utterly amazing cinematography headed up by first time DP Dan Stafford-Clarke, the movie's visual aesthetic is immediately striking. In fact, it's what elevates the film altogether, as you'd expect a flick on this kind of budget to adopt a more conventional and generic style. However in reality it's quite the opposite, as Clarke suitably complements the themes of the film by crafting sparse sets, brilliantly composed images and welcomed musical interludes which are all punctuated by a striking desaturated colour pallete, resulting in an infectious melancholic atmosphere that permeates throughout the picture.

Although unfortunately, at times the film relies too much on a well edited music sequence or a picturesque long shot to hold the attention of the audience when nothing of substance is actually happening on screen. While most of the shots display a real sense of poignancy and unspoken character development, at times it feels like there isn't anything actually going on under the flashy and arty cinematography, and there's a creeping sense that Everyone's Going to Die is more content with trying to ape the look of arthouse independent features, rather than actually being one itself.

Another disappointing mis-fire for Jones' picture stems from the film's attempts at humour. Mostly hit and miss, the offbeat and irreverent comedy sadly feels rather out of place with the atmosphere the movie spends so much time building up. While some gags are executed brilliantly, for every joke that lands gracefully there's another that falls with a complete thud. Fortunately, the film's stoic British humour works enough of the time that it never truly becomes a problem, and the fact that the number of gags give way to more dramatic beats as the picture progresses means that these small failings become more niggling disappointments than through and through deal-breakers.

While at times you get the sense that there might not be as much going on under the hood of Everyone's Going to Die as the filmmakers would have you believe, for the most part this debut film is a confident and bold step for an interesting new collective of filmmakers. Even though the comedy doesn't always hit the mark, the picture feels like a genuine attempt to create an original and interesting experience, and for the most part Jones have managed to create a hipster drama that's just that. A dark romantic comedy with a striking sense of atmosphere and character, Everyone's Going to Die isn't perfect, but it's the type of movie the British film industry has been absolutely clamouring for.