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Heaven Help Me, I'm in Love (2005)

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Butch takes his girlfriend Angie for granted one too many times, causing her to finally dump him. Meanwhile, Butch's friend Donald has been desperately, and unsuccessfully, trying to write ... See full summary »

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(story and screenplay), (additional material)
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Butch
...
Angie
Michael Hicks ...
Donald
Minna Hicks ...
Karen
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Shannon
...
Deborah
...
Lily
Nic Pesante ...
Guy
Heather Toon ...
Tina
Daniel Paige ...
Darryl
Jimmy Moore ...
Ken
Conney Lemke ...
Melissa
B. Dallas Jones ...
Perv in park
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Todd Brown ...
Darryl
Tom McCaffery ...
Stu
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Storyline

Butch takes his girlfriend Angie for granted one too many times, causing her to finally dump him. Meanwhile, Butch's friend Donald has been desperately, and unsuccessfully, trying to write the all-American screenplay. He soon finds inspiration in Butch, who rebounds and gets involved with one "wrong" girl after another... Will Butch win back Angie's heart before it's too late??? Written by Greg Visiko, On Mark Prods. publicist

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A modern love story. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

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Release Date:

27 September 2005 (USA)  »

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Budget:

$100,000 (estimated)
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Shannon: Aren't you gonna offer me a drink?
Butch: I would... if I wanted you to stick around.
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User Reviews

Romantic comedy change of pace doesn't fly
3 February 2011 | by (New York, New York) – See all my reviews

Mark Baranowski and his beautiful wife Ryli Morgan took a breather from their usual dramatic efforts for this stab at romantic comedy, but unfortunately the Carolina video team just wasn't ready for prime time. Only die-hard fans like me will want to sit through the result.

Basically a vanity production made on a zero budget, film begins with Butch (Baranowski) and his slacker buddy Stu (Tom McCaffery) shooting the breeze, while Donald (Michael Hicks, a regular in Mark's videos) is frustrated in his attempts to write "The Great American Comedy". (Hint: this video ain't it.) Donald gets to enunciate a bitter diatribe against the public that doesn't appreciate his indie videos -Hicks is obviously Mark's surrogate expressing the director's attitude. Donald's wife, played by Minna Hicks, is a forerunner of the plus-size actresses Mark has latterly added to his repertory company, including England Simpson, who has a brief but telling role here as a black dominatrix on a blind date with Butch.

Before the rom-com plot commences in earnest, loyal fans are treated to glimpses of Ryli's moneymakers in a bathtub scene, where co-star Rachelle Williams oddly uses the same bath water (man, is this REALLY low-budget video-making!) after her, displaying full frontal nudity. I guess you won't see that in a Katherine Heigl rom-com.

Butch's and Angie's (Mark & Ryli) romantic travails soon take center stage, with a religious subtext injected, which became a dominant theme in their next video ILL TIMES. Williams is once again the go-to actress for portraying a slut, with her dalliance with Butch interrupted in flagrante delicto by Angie, creating the film's main conflict.

Will Butch & Angie get back together again? Not really a burning question for the fans. So some trick casting helps ease the nearly 100-minute running time, with favorite pin-up Brinke Stevens in a dead-serious role as a fatally ill character, or former '70s starlet Lynn Lowry making a comeback as Butch's mom, who encourages her son to find meaning, through God, in his life.

Occasionally Mark's writing transcends the conventions and corniness of a rom-com, as in a weird and unsuccessful date for Ryli with scruffy Darryl (Daniel Paige) who insists on lecturing her about XXX porn "roughie" classic films of the '70s.

SPOILERS AHEAD:

Finale is wishful thinking stretched to the breaking point: Donald getting rich on sale of a screenplay based upon the events we've just seen; Brinke having a miracle cure; Butch getting religion; and our star couple reunited. The Baranowskis dance around during the end credits' sequence.

To keep the fans mollified, there's a lengthy "making of" featurette on the video where we get to see Ryli's breasts during take after take of her bathtub scene opposite Williams. Without being too blunt, it remains a fact of life that even for an ambitious non-horror/non-violent project like HEAVEN HELP ME, Baranowski realizes that it is the naked beauty of his wife that sells and has created whatever following exists for his work. I keep hoping some other filmmakers will hire Ryli and give her some quality roles -heck, even Tina Russell made many wonderful films (thank God!) without her hubby Jason Russell around.


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