It’s not uncommon to leave a film with a specific emotion. Katie Says Goodbye left a feeling of despair and hope, which is an odd combination to walk away with. First time writer and director Wayne Roberts manages to create a character who is very optimistic despite the life she’s having to live to support her mother and herself.
Katie Says Goodbye lays on the heartache
Katie (Olivia Cooke) is a waitress at a diner and a casual prostitute. It seems like every guy in the town is aware of her services and are constantly offering her a ride. She does it all with an air of normalcy that makes her horrific situation all the more unsettlingly. Of course, her day to day practices change when she meets Bruno (Christopher Abbott) and falls in love at first sight.
Olivia Cooke is an actress with immense range and the ability to carry an emotional weight that is impressive. The character of Katie is unique from most other tales of a young girl living a life of prostitution. She isn’t on drugs and doesn’t even drink. She is a good person who is in need of money and has found a resource people are willing to pay for. She is naive in many ways, but a dreamer who longs to escape the only place she has ever known.
Of course, this story could end in the happy ending territory. Bruno is Prince Charming who rescues her from the prison of prostitution and whisks her off to the magical and mysterious San Francisco. However, without spoiling anything, Roberts opts for a more tragic tale that unfolds in a series of heartbreaking moments. Yet, some how manages to still leave hope in the audience even as the last tissue is pulled from the box.
Unfortunately, as good as this film is, it has not found distribution here in the US. Not sure when or if you’re going to get to see this film, but if enough people request it maybe Netflix, Vudu, or Amazon will snag it. Katie Says Goodbye earns the Not Quite Golden, Ponyboy rating.