Myles is divorced in L.A. He wants a love life and a film career. So he decides to go on 20 dates and find true love in front of a camera, making his first feature. His patient agent, Richard, finds a $60,000 investor, the shadowy Elie. Myles starts his search, sometimes telling his date she's being filmed, sometimes not. Elie wants sex and titillation, Myles wants it "real." Myles regularly talks with his old film teacher, Robert McKee, who wonders if love is possible in modern life. Half-way through the 20 dates, Myles meets Elisabeth; she's everything he desires and she likes him. Can he finish the 20 dates, satisfy Elie, and complete his film without losing Elisabeth? Written by
Myles Berkowitz is newly divorced after his 10-month marriage ended badly. He also is keen to make his debut film that will launch his movie career. He decides to combine the two biggest failures of his life - his film `career' and his love life to make a film about the real search for love in LA. He sets out to film 20 dates to capture the moment where two people fall in love. However he is in for a rocky road - not only does he have trouble with his dates but the guy funding his film wants it to be something other than what Myles envisages it to be.
This film was made on the cheap and is a mix of documentary and mockumentary; there is no way that all the stuff in this film is real - certainly I never accepted that Elie the producer was the character that the film painted him to be. However, the majority of it seems to be relatively real and the majority of it is funny - which is the important thing here. Forget Myles arty pretensions about filming true love as it happens, the point here is wit and fun. The film is a very particular type of wit and if you're not into it then it is likely that you will hate the film; for me I really enjoyed the light humour of the whole piece and found it amusing even if I wouldn't call it hilarious.
I really liked the invention of some parts of it: the comparisons of the budget in military terms (his film would be the equivalent of one French soldier surrendering to whoever it happens to be at war with), the stuff around Elie, the `meetings' with his agent etc. In fact most of the funny stuff is staged - and it is for the best. If I was being cynical I would question whether or not 95% of the film was scripted and acted as natural. But it didn't bother me because I found it funny.
Myles himself is a strange guy; he is quite abrasive and pretty unpleasant at times and is a bit of a jerk. He definitely doesn't deserve Elisabeth but it is easy to be amused by his cruel humour at times. He holds the attention pretty well when he is on dates, but as an actor I didn't think much of him: at one point we learn he refused an offer for a script on the basis that he would only sell it if he could star - he really needs to focus on writing as neither directing or acting appears to be his thing on the basis of this. The support crew are hilarious. Myles sound guy and cameraman are funny when they have the chance, while both Richard the agent and Elie are hilarious and don't mind sending themselves up!
Overall, treat this film as a comedy rather than a documentary - large chunks of it are staged, but it actually helps the film. It is very rough but it is different and quite enjoyable; it is funny in witty ways and it is funny in inventive ways and both styles work really well. It is not a perfect film (Myles' comes across like a daytime tv presenter at times) but it is fun; and that's all I was really looking for.
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