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William Gregory Lee,
Two writers must face a dilemma that is common to anyone who has ever had an artistic friend: what happens when you have to give feedback, and the news isn't good? Sam, an aspiring screenwriter, and David, a successful magazine editor, have been pals for years. When David doesn't appreciate Sam's latest attempt, it opens a fissure in their friendship, one that spreads through the rest of their lives. Ultimately, both men must reevaluate their motivations to write, their need for praise and validation, and what it means to see yourself as you actually are. Written by
Clever mini-budget comedy/drama that wickedly probes real truths about screen writing and, more seriously, explores the lies we tell each other and ourselves and the costs and rewards of absolute truthfulness.
Consisting of eight dialogues (comic or serious and sometimes morphing from one to the other) beautifully (and non-statically) shot in various locales around LAlaland, it manages to be about not just creativity but the basis of friendship and--most importantly--about whether we can ever avoid trying to be what we feel others want us to be and do and follow our instincts about what WE really want out of life. It may feel much like a play, but the strong visuals and uniformly excellent acting make that an asset rather than a liability. (Karen Black as a strange, expensive script consultant is especially good.)
The writer/director calls this "Rohmer lite"...and if you get that reference, you'll probably like the film.
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