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Kyle Patrick Alvarez
Leaving the ivy-covered walls of Yale behind, the privileged and intellectual Samuel sets out to discover the real world armed with books and a strong conviction of atheism. He goes to work at an apple orchard under an alias, but is thrust into a world he is wholly unprepared for with religious locals and untrustworthy co-workers. His sexuality and lack of faith will be tested as he learns to rely on strangers in a world that can't be taught in books and a classroom.Written by
A rueful, seriocomic D. Sedaris memoir minus D. Sedaris—his unique authorial voice and his unmatched ability to see his goofus younger self as others must have seen him—doesn't sound like it would have much going for it, but "C.O.G." is actually a pretty good film. David, an East Coast grad student estranged from his family and otherwise at loose ends, has been persuaded by a flighty friend that this would be an excellent time for him "to get his hands dirty" picking apples in Oregon; when a tough-looking apple packer (Dale Dickey) says she'd like to "knock that f—r union rep from here to Tokyo," David asks brightly, "Have any of you actually ever been to Japan? It's a beautiful place." Clearly David's going to have some problems adjusting to life in the Hood River fruit-growing region. Writer-director Kyle Patrick Alvarez was well advised to lose the traditional coming-of-age-film voice-over; DS's unpredictable and thoroughly engaging storyline works perfectly well on its own, and the unSedarislike Jonathan Groff does just fine as David. Good work by all concerned, in fact, especially Corey Stoll and Denis O'Hare as strangers with candy. The Steve Reich percussion pieces are a little distracting at times, but mostly used to good effect.
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