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2001 | 1997

1 item from 1997


Film review: 'Plan B'

18 March 1997 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- From careers to relationships, reality takes a few bites out of a quintet of young moderns in writer-director Gary Leva's uneven but crowd-pleasing "Plan B", a low-budget indie that premiered recently at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

Jon Cryer headlines a talented cast in a well-intentioned but predictable ensemble comedy set during the holiday season. Catchy title aside, "Plan B" has limited theatrical prospects. Cable and video gigs look more promising.

Stuart (Cryer) is a "serious" author who has penned a commercial thriller and hopes for a career breakthrough. His friend Rick (Mark Matheisen) is a handsome but brainless actor constantly on the hunt for ladies.

From Halloween to New Year's Eve, Stuart and Rick Cross paths several times with married couple Clare (Lisa Darr) and Jack Lance Guest) and Clare's promiscuous sister Gina (Sara Mornell). The individual conflicts of the five all have comic elements that are sporadically entertaining.

Clare is waging an all-out campaign to get pregnant and her after-sex tactics to increase the odds are amusing. A professional pilot, Jack is training to fly jetliners when his eyesight suddenly presents a problem. With his own small plane, however, he starts a flying motel bedroom service for adventuresome lovers.

In a promising debut, Mornell has the showiest role as sultry Gina, who sports an eclectic string of lovers before realizing the obvious, she needs to find a good guy. Most of the action takes place at parties and group gatherings, which makes it all seem strained and even contrived.

Not even the likable Cryer can do much with the many flat jokes, but it's Matheisen who has the most thankless job. Rick is too stereotyped a character and his self-absorbed game plan is tedious. First-time director Leva does a competent job, but the whole meandering affair could have been a lot livelier.

PLAN B

Puny But Loud Prods.

Writer-director Gary Leva

Producers Nancy Joslin, Gary Leva,

Lulu Baskins-Leva

Executive producers Shelly & Sally Leva Burr

& Elizabeth Joslin

Director of photography Yoram Astrakhan

Production designer Carol Strober

Editor Jane Allison Fleck

Music Andrew Rose

Color/stereo

Cast:

Stuart Jon Cryer

Clare Lisa Darr

Rick Mark Matheisen

Jack Lance Guest

Gina Sara Mornell

Running time -- 102 minutes

No MPAA rating

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2001 | 1997

1 item from 1997


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