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Living the Dream" is a docudrama about two friends who after being bullied as children become corrupt when growing up because they have been conditioned to believe that they need to achieve materialistic success to be 'accepted' and liked by others, in a society where the end justifies the means. Written by
Good written, not so good done, but certainly watchable
After seeing the rating here at IMDb and hearing the stupid accents on the trailer I didn't really have high hopes for this movie. Luckily it turned out to be much better than expected.
Meet Jonathan and Brenda. After given a hard time growing up they move to L.A. to pursue the American dream, only to find out all they who gave them a hard time in their childhood is still giving them a hard time and have found the dream they so desperately seek.
This is one of those films with a rather strong, original and out of the ordinary story. First off it's a story that many can relate to in one way or another. The film is well written with good characters and nice development. You may see where it's headed, but you don't mind cause there's so much to see on the way.
I would like to say that good characters are given life by good actors, but I'm afraid I can not. The acting is far from 100%. Worst is probably Christian Schoyen as Jonathan. His English is far from good and it's really annoying. Sean Young is OK, Danny Trejo rather good and Jeff Conaway simply good. A big surprise to me was Kristian Valen who did a much better performance then I'd expected and was among the better ones.
Alan Filterman does a nice job with the cinematography. Doesn't exactly qualify for an Oscar, but it's good enough. Nothing stands out as really good, but nothing stands out as really bad either. I didn't really like the editing. Some cheap and easy-way-out-solutions there and it could've been better. It's easy to see this is not the most experienced editor.
As for music it's simple, yet strong. I really liked the score as it brought out the feel and mood of the film very well. Bryan Galvez has done a good job there. They also use a lot of non-original music, but they do so wisely. They don't put too much focus on this music and mainly just let it run in the background and so they make the music fit the scene not trying to fit the scene to the music.
All in all Living the Dream is not gonna be one of the best film this year. If so something would be very wrong. Technically it's no wonder. It's below average. However, where this movie succeeds is telling an interesting and good story. That's why you watch this movie and this proves that it's the quality of the story not the size of the budget that decides if the will turn out good or not. I can't quite decide what rating to give it. However, my first response was 6 or 7, but ended on a 6 simply to say, this is as low as it goes.
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