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Ole Martin Hafsmo
Ida Elise Broch,
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Thou movie, which art on screen, hallowed be they name. The time has come. Thou will be shown in theaters as well as home. Give us this day our daily film and forgive our bad choices, as we forgive those whose movies were so bad to choose. And lead us not into television, but deliver us from that evil, for movies are the picture and the sound, and the greatest thing in the whole wide world, forever and ever. Movies Rule!
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A funny, romantic, well-acted and well-directed film
The fourth wall is broken in this funny, romantic and well-acted and -directed film for all -- especially people who love movies.
At the start, movie lover Blake shares with us -- his own personal, omnipresent audience -- his plan to do what all movie heroes do: battle a "suspicious character" and save the day. But first, he must find the requisite funny "sidekick" (he chooses young, black Antoine, whom Blake likes immediately despite his fear of the cliche their relationship creates). Blake also discovers the lovely, perfectly imperfect woman who must surely be his "love interest" -- and who is, naturally, already attached. Though everyone in his life questions his sanity, Blake believes his ability to see "his" audience is a gift. What's so great is the clever way the movie makes us, the audience, question his sanity at times, too.
Jeremy Sisto easily, breezily carries the film. He plays Blake as warm and likable, with just enough innocence to make us believe in him despite the underlying sadness and desperation in some of Blake's actions. I've been a fan of the actor for ages now, and here he has a role to showcase his full range of talent. He also has chemistry galore with Dina Meyer, who's pretty and smart and whom we want to be happy, just like our hero.
The rest of the cast is also terrific. The always-interesting Peter Stormare is creepy, yes, but it's also apparent he's having a great time, so he's never really threatening. Alexis Arquette has a funny cameo, Frances Bay a heartbreaking one, and Marcia Strassman and Eric Pierpoint (as Blake's mom and dad) are the kind of supportive, funny parents you'd hope to have if the world didn't understand you. Brian White nicely fleshes out Antoine.
Director Brad Gottfred shows a real maturity and confidence in both the script and direction. It wasn't until about halfway through that I realized just how complicated the camera work must have been. He's confronted with a similar challenge as M. Night Shyamalan probably had in presenting certain key scenes in the Sixth Sense. And yet he, DP Samuel Ameen and editor Ryan Rothmaier pull it off flawlessly.
During a Q&A after the screening in Cleveland, Gottfred said as of yet there is no distribution deal. I hope it gets one. Until then, if you have the chance to see this at a film festival, be sure to. I'm already looking forward to seeing it again in the theater, on cable, or DVD.
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