A young girl in Nevada becomes romantically involved with a female drifter who introduces her to a life of stripping, drugs, and metaphysical experiences that teach her what happens when real life catches up with dark fantasy.
Paz de la Huerta,
Death in the Desert is a love triangle set in the fast-paced, sometimes lonely world of Las Vegas. The life of Kim Davis, the young live-in girlfriend of legendary casino owner Ray Easler, ... See full summary »
Chicano gangster Micky Solis finds that his family has been slaughtered by the Chinese mob. His whole life force turns to finding the killers. A slick lawyer (Angus MacFadyen) leads Micky ... See full summary »
Paz de la Huerta,
The life of a woman is transformed after she is diagnosed with a terminal disease, fired from her job and abandoned by her boyfriend. Given two months to live, she throws caution to the wind to pursue her dreams.
Isaach De Bankolé,
Paz de la Huerta
Realism and fantasy collide in Jonathan Lethem's genre-bending coming-of-age story, which follows two estranged brothers as they try to leave New York City for a new life in California only... See full summary »
Anthony M. Bertram
BRINGING RAIN is the story of boarding school students that have suffered a scarring accident. Stuck together for the last month of school, they are faced with either dealing with the ... See full summary »
Paz de la Huerta,
"Rigoletto" retold at Christmas time in Manhattan's corporate world. Rick, an executive at Image, is a jerk to a woman applying for a job. That evening, he's out for drinks with his much ... See full summary »
A young ballet dancer explores her emotional and sexual world
Kevin Asher Green's HOMEWORK is a visual storytelling masterpiece. The drama is narrated with minimal dialogue and yet the lush imagery and photography tell the entire story.
The story is that of Sara, a young ballet dancer played by the pouty Paz de la Huerta (The Cider House Rules), who is wafting between boredom and the pursuit of perfection in her upper crust life. Snugly fit between a chess-addicted pseudo-intellectual boyfriend, bulimia and constrained classical dancers, her life seems void of sensuality and inspiration. That is, until she meets her match in Jean (Isaach De Bankolé), a West African plumber from the opposite side of town who has been called upon to fix her bathroom sink. He tells her that he too is a dancer, and before you know it, Sara is dumping multiple bottles of Drano into the pipes to provoke return visits to her New York Apartment with "three bathrooms for four people". Jean, it turns out, is an instructor in a dance studio in the same building as Sara's ballet class and he captures her attention through his natural simplicity and by the freedom of his movements. It is Sara's shipwrecked curiosity that ultimately prevails and explodes into a new awakening of her emotional and sexual world.
Green glides from scene to scene gracefully. His jump cuts make the movie fresh, as you never quite know when a scene ends or begins. This influence he says, is derived from Asian and French cinema. The influence of Wong Kar-wai permeates this quiet film, yet it feels wholly original. The film even takes on an architectural structure in its continuity and fluidity made real by cinematographer Richard Rutkowski (Chelsea Walls) in digital video. His graphic handling of neon lights, concrete landscapes and nocturnal scenes blur the life lines in this film both visually and metaphorically. With its intercut pacing (400 shots packed into an economical 57-page screenplay), the film relies on location, mood, color, and music rather than dialogue to tell its story. It draws the audience into two worlds, which are at once insatiably New York. Green has an admitted fondness for the repetitive shot, and repeatedly uses the same shot to underscore the ennui in Sara's life. Green is a genuine talent who has constructed a lyrical, minimalist and visually compelling film that transcends its astonishingly low budget. HOMEWORK needs no more words.
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