Robert Longfellow is a playwright whose latest play in New York City has just bombed while his marriage is in no better shape. Seeking an escape, he travels back to Los Angeles to visit his mother, meet a dear secret girlfriend and decide on new writing opportunities. However, everything changes when his brutish childhood neighbor, Gus, takes Robert hostage with the police surrounding the house. In this situation, the strained conversations inside drift to Robert's profession and the nature of creative writing. To placate Gus, Robert introduces him to improvisational dialogue and the pair engage in some dramatic exercises. However as they perform, the material becomes more personal as the trapped pair confront each other with hard truths that will leave neither of them unscathed.Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I was really taken with this film. It starts off about one theme, a professional failure, and then peels away unfolding like an emotional and psychological crap shoot. It builds in tension as it discards its facade. The dialog is on point, with the protagonist, a master of language, modifying his speech and tone to better fit those he converses with: his mother, wife, an elderly neighbor, a childhood friend. The dialog serves as its own character. I found myself stepping into the protagonist's shoes, reacting as I might to my past, taking a closer look whether I wanted to or not. Some nostalgic bells certainly rang for me, but that was the point. It is a film to watch slowly, to listen to without distraction. Perhaps it could have been tighter wound, crisper around the early edges, but then it's supposed to come at you from behind.
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