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Max Solomon faces the awful truth that he will never be a writer. So, in a desperate attempt to find his true calling, he turns to crime. In this inventive comedy, three friends have their lives turned upside down when one of them realizes that larceny might be his best skill. Written by
Monty Miranda's "Skills Like This" has more things wrong with it than just its ungrammatical title. In fact, it's about as innocuous as an indie comedy can be without disappearing from the screen entirely.
Set in Denver, the story centers around four buddies with widely divergent personalities who, nevertheless, remain the best of friends; Dave (Gabriel Tigerman), a straight-arrow salesman who hates his job; Tommy (Brian D. Phelan), a wisecracking slacker with an inflated view of his bad-boy toughness; and Max (Spencer Berger), an unsuccessful playwright who finds he has an aptitude for petty thievery and begins to view it as his very own form of artistic expression.
The theme of going outside the law as a means of finding one's identity as an individual is a fairly amusing one at its core, but the movie makers don't really seem to have much of an idea of how to carve an interesting movie out of it. Perhaps, the script by Berger is just a bit too timid, a bit too reluctant to dive head-first into the realm of slashing satire or hard-hitting black comedy to register much of an impact, settling for feel-good, pseudo-Robin Hood pablum instead. That's a shame, seeing as how most of the actors reveal at least some degree of talent that the material gives them little opportunity to show off for the audience.
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