Radio commentator, Thomas Bach, runs for the U.S. Senate in Minnesota. Through a circumstance, he ends up in the middle of L.A.'s brutal homeless community. What he does with his new awareness is pitted against the forces. of security.
A story about those who have fallen out of the system. A man who is not homeless, but upwardly mobile as an opinionated radio host, is about to step up to another plateau as a politician. His true nature is good, but his actions are motivated not by his nature, but by needs and wants that a system like ours seduces us with. A system where survival is awarded not to the fittest anymore, but to the cleverest. The downtrodden characters in "Monday Morning" are the hardcore homeless. Hopeless rather than homeless. For writer-director, Nat Christian, "Monday Morning" is when the mechanism of the city wakes up - car horns start honking, water sprinklers start gushing, trucks barrel down the road, workers hose the sidewalks, and the homeless people get out of the way. "Mature subject matter" and "Viewer Discretion" is definitely advised.Written by
I went to see it with a friend who was invited to a private screening of this movie at the Royal Theater in Los Angeles. I didn't know anything about it and I was blown away. The depths that this film goes through to present the heart breaking situation of the homeless in Los Angeles, and I guess anywhere, are deep and expansive.
Directed by the writer, Nat Christian, Monday Morning represents where I would want to see movies going. A solid story, fascinating characters and hard truths. Story, story, story, story! With a little bit of humor, fascinating visual compositions, excellent acting and a moving score, Christian manages to engage us in an an entertaining drama, mostly set within the bleak and at times very disturbing homeless atmosphere. At first, during the beginning, I thought that I was in for a light hearted comedy/drama. But then, I believe the whole audience was surprised by some hard hitting harsh realities being depicted. Clever move by Christian. His confidence in writing the script is matched by his competent, and I should say passionate hand, behind the camera.
The film is graced (as in the lead character's word) with some excellent performances by the cast headed by Victor Browne. Browne embodies the character of Thomas Bach (a right wing radio host who comes to L.A. and by circumstance becomes homeless) with a talent equal to our best actors walking around today. In Monday Morning, he covers a wide range of emotions from comedic to tragic. He is a sympathetic actor in the sense that he doesn't have to do much for us to care about him. And when he has to deliver, he knocks it out of the park.
His is joined by two female leads, Molly Kidder and Jessica Spotts, both excellent actresses. Kidder lends a real honesty and integrity in the role of Katherine Sands (She and Thomas fall for each other). Great to look at, she offers a very powerful surprise in the movie, which I can't divulge. Spotts delivers an outstanding performance. With true grit, she shines in a very tough role. And then again we have the director, Christian, who delivers a knockout and sometimes humorous performance as a homeless character whom Thomas befriends. There were so many wonderful actors in the cast and it would be impossible for me to mention all of them. Actors like Cevin Middleton as Thomas's producer. Ken Melchior, who plays a conservative, and slightly evil, senator with perfect aplomb. Robert Pike Daniel, who plays a senator at odds with Melchior's character, is always wonderful in his roles. Robert Axelrod gives us a sad portrayal as a doctor who has ended up on the streets.
A special call out to Buffy Dakan, Kim Salt, Cliff Sprung, Bob Jay Mills, Rick Montoya, Michael Cohen, Amy Greenspan and so many others.
The cast is adorned with a beautiful score by Rossano Galante. And the movie which comes in at around one hour and fifty minutes is well served by the excellent editing skills of Nat Christian, Peter Srinivasan and Jonathan Fung. The credits show that Srinivasan and Fung also did multiple duties on this movie.
Monday Morning is the kind of movie that takes you completely away and you are involved in a life that is vividly created and people whom you become immediately familiar with. I highly recommend this movie.
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