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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

A stuttering boxer tries for success outside of the ring.

Author: dabelsteen from Boston, MA
20 October 2002

Brett Carr tells us he spent 7 years and $100,000 on making this picture which raises two important questions: Why and on what?

Carr opens the movie with a confusing narration from inside a theatre lobby and is apparently speaking as both the director and as the protagonist, Lou Benadetti. What follows is a confusing group of flashbacks as the fighter is forced to leave the ring, break up with his girl and deal with his homophobia all of which is interspersed with more flashbacks to his childhood and flashforwards to the theatre lobby.

Somehow his stuttering problem is dealt with by some kind of silly pschycological brainstorming sessions and a beating from a 16 year old. Of the 6 or 7 subplots that dominate the film only the homophobia is resolved satisfactorily.

Suffice to say, this was 2 hours of my life that I'll never get back.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Interesting premise but terrible direction

Author: Osher Kinareh from Boston, Massachusetts
5 December 2002

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Bret Carr (who also directs this would be film) plays Lou Benedetti, a low IQ boxer, fan of Rocky Balboa, who -due to a father / son conflict- has developed a studdering problem. We are first introduced to Lou as an honest boxer but, due to additional health problems (just think tear jerking music), he can no longer fight legal matches and must settle for underground confrontations (just think Fight Club with poor Michael Bay type editing). Because of his instability, lou loses his girlfriend and, being homophobic, the only person who comes to help him is (surprise !) gay. While it's not possible to say more without revealing spoilers, let's just add that the remaining of the film (overly long) follows the evolution of the character from being a reclusive person to becoming a good guy in love with the entire planet. What's sad it that there are a few good elements in there (story wise) but the execution is so poor that this film is a total waste of time. Poor acting (the director plays the central character and is completely over the top - the movie goes back & forth between his interventions in front of a cinema screen and the NYC action - horrible !), poor directing (wait for these steadycam shots that never make sense - again the editing doesn't help), poor photography (and way too many electronic effects are used), poor music (does Bill Conti really has anything to do with this ?), etc... This premise would maybe become a good remake in the hands of another director but, as of now, just save two hours of your life and avoid that pretentious flick.

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2 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

coolest character

Author: martin anyasa ( from texas
21 December 2002

I saw this movie in Austin, and was surprised at how much character and heart it had. Well made and performed by the main guy, his enthusiasm was contageous. I left the theatre wondering if I could debug my own brain, something Lou Benedetti learns to embrace throughout the movie. Been awhile since a movie introduced a new idea into my life. A four star thumbs up.

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3 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

worth seeing; bret carr is convincing in a difficult role

Author: dunc12001 from Alabama
23 September 2003

With final editing, this will be a good movie. While somewhat disjointed, the audience certainly gets a sense of the turmoil Lou experiences and participates in his triumph. Bret Carr turns in a very creditable performance in a demanding role as the protagonist. When I met him after the showing, I half expected him to be stuttering and darting glances from side to side.

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2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

most moving film of the past few years

Author: bonitaspatronas from new york
14 December 2002

Rarely have i gone to the theatre and seen a character truly become a new human being. Bret Carr, who directed and starred in 2 Birds, has made a most powerful film. The title character, Lou Benedetti, transforms from violent stuttering homophobe into a motivational speaker. This alone is enough to keep you in your seat as his performance was spellbinding. However, the story and interweaving of flashback and sound effects taking us inside of his head, was almost painterly in its design. And the result was the most moving film experience I've had in the last few years. I fully recommend this wonderful film. It blended comedy with tragedy and then took me back out the top making me feel like I too can conquer the world. Or, perhaps, just my demons. That is enough for me. Oh, and there is a marvelous cameo which is excruciatingly funny and poignant and serves to move the story along in yet another wonderfully surprising way. This film is full of surprises and little miracles. See it now. Take you family. Then go see it again. I'm going to. But how, I'm not sure, since I accidentally walked into a screening at the angelika. Somebody is bound to discover this gem, and put it in theatres. This film needs to be seen.

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1 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Like a great sculpture, 2 Birds was chiseled into a profound and uplifting film.

Author: danny-195 from Hollywood
7 April 2003

I don't now why but when I first viewed this a few years back when Bret Carr solicited us to program it (I was working at Slamdance) the film had sporadic bits of genius but did not come together. But after watching it again I was very impressed. Startled. I really don't understand how I could have missed the outstanding portrayal of his two roles in the father-son relationship, or the moving way that Lou can only express himself via conflict. This is a very great film. And not only did we program it over 2800 films this year, but it brought the audience to tears and was for me and some other programmers, the hit of Sundance.

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1 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A groundbreaking masterpiece. Bret Carr gives a Spellbinding Performance

Author: marianne-20 from Los Angeles
4 April 2003

Lou is a film which psychologically rooted itself inside of me. Much the way Godfather made me want to escape the destiny of my father's legacy. However, instead of the dark turns of the Godfather, Lou created a surreal fast-paced Scorcese landscape which captivated me emotionally and visually. Comedic touches allowed a cross-genre appeal which is a directorial ability held by Spielberg and few others. A stunning feature debut. Bret Carr's film, and the screenplay by Oscar nom Quinn Redeker and Mary Shashy, took hold of me by infecting me with love and pathos for the title character, Lou Benedetti. Then the film, and the SPELLBINDING performance by the actor/ director (Carr), takes you through his psychological deconstruction and awakening. Jon Jacobs who plays the Tony Robbins character and Starla Benford who plays the Oprah on speed character are both wonderful also. This is an amazing movie.

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1 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Masterfully directed with a Pacino caliber performance from Bret Carr, the actor/director.

Author: joekubrikfan from boston
22 March 2003

Bret Carr's film masterfully took me through the most risky of subjects. A film about a stuttering boxer who goes through self inflicted street therapy, ala fight club, in order to vanquish his impediment and traumatic memories at his fathers hands. First of all, the actor Bret Carr gives the best performance I've seen since Geoffry Rush in SHINE. Carr delivers a New York as wonderfully stylized as if it was his version of A CLOCKWORK ORANGE. The character Carr creates is a perfect rendition of an angry, uneducated Brooklyn superstar boxer who lives in a desperate attempt for Glory. Shades of Mike Tyson as Carr delivers a high pitched wine characteristic of the childhood LOU is trapped in. This is a really smart filmmaker. I come from a rough neighborhood, and LOU is a real character that you really feel for. Bret Carr also knows how to shoot. I was with a friend from boston who has gay tendencies and boy did this film p*** him off. LOU really challenges you to look inside yourself. A five star two thumbs up ten. AND boy did we laugh. Think Rocky directed by Oliver stone and starring a Mike Tyson character played by Thornton or Pacino or Hoffman. Bret Carr will win an Oscar some day if not for this role.

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2 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Bret Carr, a Deniro/Thorntonesque actor/directer, may define his whole career with this role. He's absolutley flawless.

Author: manuel assante (manuel-44) from Malibu
4 April 2003

I just saw this film, for the 3rd astounding time, at a DGA screening. This movie was in my hands about 1 year ago and the name has been changed since then. The workprint was called "2 birds w/1 stallone". I knew something great could come out of it or the director when I saw the first cut. But I didn't know if it would be this film that has matured to a piece of art.

The workprint was actually played at fests like Austin and others, and the director has cut and cut and rescored and reshot to the point where I feel the film is close to a classic. If anyone will release it is another story. Perhaps Harvey is the only person in town who would have the balls to market this film. Because the only way to get it out there, is to make a star of the director who also plays the lead role.

Bret Carr, a Deniro/Thorntonesque actor/directer, may define his whole career with this role. He's absolutley flawless. It gets to a point where it doesn't seem like he's acting, you feel as if you're watching a documentary.

This is my favorite kind of film. We're stuck with a character who is stuck with himself. And this guy, Lou, well, you get to know him, feel what his life his like, hear his thoughts, and sometimes even agree with the thoughts. Taxi Driver is a prime example of this. Travis Bickle and Lou Benedetti are cut from the same cloth. Lou goes down a different road, and happily it is slightly more commercial and humorous, but he still is one of the most ambitious characters in movie history, he desperatley tries to connect with people but always ends up scaring them away. But he keeps going. Until he goes inside of himself in one of the most psychologically explosive scenes in film history. By the end he ends up something of a hero. A triumph for Bret Carr who stuck with this film until it worked. And like Robert Evans says, "...a master needs time with his canvas". My rating: **** out of ****

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1 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Oscar worthy. Ethereal and genuinely moving with some unexpected moments of humor and unabashed honesty.

Author: nancy-70 from California
5 April 2003

In his feature debut as actor/ director, Bret Carr succeeds magnificently, and on a number of levels, with an inspiring, Oscar worthy performance. The finesse with which he conveys his moods and emotions is extraordinary; he enables you to `feel' his displacement, share his compassion, sense his empathy and know his anger. Quite simply, Carr makes Lou Benedetti a character you are not going to forget. The film is a classic character transformation. Raw and at the same time ethereal and genuinely moving with some unexpected moments of humor and unabashed honesty. A ten out of ten.

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