20151031: Fantasy Review--Zhongkui

Name: Zhongkui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal (2015)
IMDb: Zhongkui

Genres: Fantasy   Origins: Mainland China

Cast: Chen Kun as Zhong Kui/Demon King, Li Bingbing as Snow Demon/Little Snow, Winston Chao as Zhang Dao Xian, Zishan Yang as Zhong Ling (Kui's sister).

Directed by:  Peter Pau, Tianyu Zhao.  Written by: Chen Kun, Li Bingbing, Winston Chao.

The Three Acts: 

Initial Tableau: Every 1000 years at July 15, a period of travel among Hell, Heaven, and Earth ensues, where travel is done by reincarnation.  Devastation results as demons reincarnate near the village of Hu on Earth.  The powers that be in Heaven dispatch a volunteer, Zhang Dao Xian, to help out the humans caught in the crossfire.  Zhong Kui steals the 'Dark Crystal' from an active ceremony in Hell itself, and is spirited away by Zhang, one of the gods.  The Snow Demon volunteers to the Demon King to fetch back the crystal.  Her sister, Little Snow, is being held captive by the King, so her compliance is assured.

Delineation of Conflicts: Snow Demon wants the crystal for her King.  Heaven wants to keep it, so as to restore all the souls taken by demons.  Zhong Kui is assigned to protect the Dark Crystal as it lies hidden within Hu.  When a traveling troupe of entertainers arrives from the west, Zhong finds that Little Snow came with it.  Can Zhong help free Little Snow from Hell, or will she seduce him away from his primary duty to Heaven?  Will he successfully defend the Dark Crystal and the captured souls within it?

Resolution: There are some major reversals during the final segment as resolution approaches.  Those were quite well done.

One line summary: Grand fantasy, Chinese style, from the video game of the same name.


Cinematography: 8/10 Variable.  Most of it is quite good.

Sound: 8/10 Some instrumental sections of the background music are way too florid for my tastes.

Acting: 7/10 Again, quite variable.  Some of the bit players are not very skilled.

Screenplay: 7/10 Being a fantasy involving three realms, the film has to deliver a lot of context in a short time.  I watched this on Netflix, and was glad to be able to roll back and clarify points now and then.

SFX: 7/10 Quite variable. Some of the effects are amateurishly bad. The majority look mature and impressive.

Final Rating: 7/10


20151030: Horror Review--Heartless

Name: Heartless (2009)
IMDb: link to IMDB

Genres: Horror, Mystery  Country of Origin: UK

Cast: Jim Sturgess as Jamie Morgan, Noel Clarke as A.J., Timothy Spall (Wormtail in the Harry Potter films) as George Morgan, Clemence Poesy as Tia, Joseph Mawle as Papa B, Eddie Marsan as Weapons Man, Luke Treadaway as Lee Morgan, Justin Salinger as Raymond Morgan.

Written and directed by:  Philip Ridley

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau: Jamie's face is dominated by large birthmarks, plural.  The largest one covers his whole left eye area.  Jamie does 'real' photography with film, and chemical development where he works with his brother.  While trolling for photo opportunities at night, he runs afoul of some bipedal reptilians, who look like gangsters, while they kill two people and set them on fire.  Jamie lives with his mother.  AJ is Jamie's new neighbor; for lack of other candidates, AJ hopes to become Jamie's friend. Jamie's father George is 10 years dead, but still has a presence in his life.  Jamie seems quite alienated by his life, his deformities, his job, is living arrangement, and his lack of prospects with women.

Delineation of conflicts:  This is somewhat difficult to describe.  Why?  Because the protagonist seems to be insane.  Just how much of this is real?  It's hard to get interested in characters when it is not clear what is real and what is feverish imaginings.

Let us suppose that what is presented is real. Jamie gets a gun to protect himself after the gang beats the hell out of him and burns his mother alive.  The reptiles rake AJ's abdomen with a deep claw attack.  The whole setup is to justify Jamie's descent into cooperation with dark forces to solve his self-perceived problems.

Jamie would like to have female companionship, marriage, and children. How is that going to happen?  Does the dark pact with Papa B help out this problem?  Can he back out?

If the protagonist is insane, on the other hand, one hopes the conflict in his mind ends before the movie does.

Resolution: The protagonist is a broken toy.  The usual resolution for broken toys is that they stop working.

One line summary: Yet another deal with the devil gone bad.

  a. Cinematography: 2/10 We have here some really fine VHS shooting.  Or is this some really bad current cinematography?

  b. Sound: 1/10 Too loud, too intrusive, and not all that interesting.

  c. Acting: 4/10 Joseph Mawle and Eddie Marsan were good.  I liked what little I saw of Timothy Spall.  Jim Sturgess was way over the top, and most of the rest of the cast I could have done without.

  d. Screenplay: 2/10 The first monolog by Papa B was rather good.  However, things go downhill into a flurry of cliches after that.  There is nothing new here, nothing interesting, just the lies made up by an insane mind.  This film was not as bad as the much more pretentious Babadook, but it is still a rotten mess.

Final rating: 2/10


20151028: Action Review--Iron Man 3

Name: Iron Man 3 (2014)
IMDb: link to IMDb page

Genres: Action, Thriller   Country of Origin: USA

Cast: Guy Pearce as Aldrich Killian, Ben Kingsley as The Mandarin (Trevor Slattery), Miguel Ferrer as Vice President Rodriguez, William Sadler as President Ellis, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark, Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts, Rebecca Hall as Maya Hansen, Stephanie Szostak as Ellen Brandt, Ty Simpkins as Harley Keener, Paul Bettany as JARVIS (voice).

Directed by:  Shane Black. Written by:  Shane Black, Drew Pearce.

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau:  We open over a decade ago in Switzerland.  Tony Stark participates wildly in end-of-the-year celebration parties.  He meets Maya Hansen and Aldrich Killian, who try valiantly to convince him to be interested in technology developed by the think tank, AIM.  Tony hardly listens, partly from buzz, partly from arrogance.  He writes out a few equations which forward the effort considerably, gives them to Killian, and promises to meet Killian on the roof to develop the ideas further.  But Tony breaks his promise.

In the present, after Tony participates in The Avengers action in New York City, there are multiple attacks by 'The Mandarin.'  Tony is not all that involved until his friend Happy Hogan is nearly killed by one of the attacks.  Tony declares war.  The Mandarin is backed by individuals who have the Extremis treatments developed by AIM.  They can melt Tony's suits from the heat of their bodies, regenerate severed limbs, and many other things.  Tony has his work cut out for him.

Delineation of conflicts:  'The Mandarin' strikes first, destroying Tony's palatial estate on the California coast.  Tony loses his armour, his labs, his base of operation, and soon enough, JARVIS and his suit. Or so it would seem. Tony has to figure out who the Mandarin really is, what AIM does, and how to counter the effects of Extremis, initially without his armour.  Worst of all, the Extremis-enhanced folk capture Pepper, and start making her one of them.  They kidnap War Machine (renamed Iron Patriot) and the President, whom they intend to replace using their own candidate.  To make things even worse, Tony has recurrent PTSD from the action in New York.

Resolution:  Will the Extremis transformation applied to Pepper be reversible?  Will the President be recovered alive?  Will Colonel Rhodes get free to fight alongside Tony?

One line summary: Tony's past comes back to haunt the USA.

  a. Cinematography: 9/10 The SFX were not perfect, but on the whole, this was a smooth visual mix that I enjoyed.

  b. Sound: 10/10 No problems, and some good music.

  c. Acting: 8/10 Guy Pearce's performance was the centre of the dark side of the film, and I liked it quite well.  Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Robert Downey Jr were lots of fun to watch in this one.  Paul Bettany as the voice of JARVIS was again a delight.  Ty Simpkins was better than I expected.

  d. Screenplay: 9/10
Pros: The story had me guessing on a couple of points to within minutes of the conclusion of the film, which is different than most live action comic book films.  This was a nice follow on film after watching John Wick the day before: massive public violence after massive private violence.  As one might hope from an action-thriller, the plot moved forward without any long pauses, and the hero's team had truly formidable obstacles to overcome.  Even to the last few minutes and the final fight, the feeling of jeopardy was present, since Tony had little hope of defeating Killian one-on-one.

Cons: The comic history of the Mandarin is trashed, utterly and completely. Without some revisionism, the Mandarin will not be able to be used in future Marvel endeavors.  This has many people up in arms.  I quite understand this; it is how I feel about Fox's vile treatment of the Fantastic Four.  This might be a problem for Marvel downstream.  The film's portrayal of the Iron Man suit was also inconsistent with its portrayal in The Avengers, where the suit could withstand attacks from Thor's hammer.

Summary: I never cared for the Mandarin, so I do not care about the portrayal of the Mandarin in IM3.  I despised the character in the comics, and later hated the character in the animated series to the point that I gave up following Iron Man for a time. Only the Tony Stark films with RDJ in the cockpit got me interested again. What made Iron Man 1 great was the portrayal of Tony Stark coming back, against all odds, to defeat enemies of his own country, and enemies of his individual person. Iron Man 3 was a return to form after the wretched Iron Man 2. The third film was about Tony Stark, about his friends, about his fans who helped him when he was down, about the power of enduring love, which is what saved Stark in the end.

Final rating: 9/10


20151027: Action Review--John Wick

Name: John Wick (2014)
IMDb: link to IMDb page

Genres: Action, Thriller  Country of Origin: USA

Cast: Keanu Reeves as John Wick, Michael Nyqvist as Viggo Tarasov, Alfie Allen as Iosef Tarasov, Willem Dafoe as Marcus, Dean Winters as Avi, Adrianne Palicki as Ms Perkins, Omer Barnea as Gregori, Toby Leonard Moore as Victor, Bridget Moynahan as Helen, John Leguiziamo as Aurelio, Ian McShane as Winston, Bridget Regan as Addy, Lance Reddick as Hotel Manager (Charon).

Directed by:  Chad Stahelski and David Leitch.  Written by: Derek Kolstad.

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau:  In modern day greater New York/New Jersey, John Wick's wife Helen suddenly dies of a long lingering illness.  His old acquaintance Marcus gives his condolences after the burial.  He grieves for an interval.  In the days after the wake, a puppy, Daisy, is delivered with a note from Helen.  John and Daisy get to like each other.  While out with Daisy getting gasoline, two Russian mobsters stop for gas at the same time. Iosef admires John's Mustang, and offers to buy either the car or the dog or both.  John declines, and an older associate calls Iosef off.  Iosef and two friends break into John's house, beat him up, ruin beautiful things, shoot Daisy, steal the Mustang, badly damage his newer car, and steal the bracelet of Helen's that John kept near him.

Delineation of conflicts: Daisy was John's last living link with Helen.  The necklace had similar importance.  John wants vengeance on Iosef and on Viggo.  Aurelio informs Viggo of Iosef's actions.  Viggo understands the problem that Iosef has created.  "That fuckin' nobody is John Wick." he informs Iosef the idiot.  He advises Iosef to get out of his sight.  He asks his associate, Avi, to task all his available men to take on John.  When that fails, he sets a bounty of 2 million USD on John's head, and also asks Marcus to do the job as soon as possible.  Will Viggo live through this?

Resolution:  The many conflicts were resolved in what I thought were reasonable ways.  I recommend this film to anyone who likes the genre.

One line summary: Excellent action/revenge film.

  a. Cinematography: 6/10 This would be one of the weaker parts of this film.  I do not like filters, and there were too many minutes of that.

  b. Sound: 9/10 There are some great music tracks in this film, and the incidental music was well-chosen.  The actors were well miked, and I had no problems picking up dialog.

  c. Acting: 8/10 I liked Dafoe as always.  This was a great role for Keanu Reeves.  I have only liked him in The Matrix before this film, and was glad to see another film that suited him so very well.  Michael Nyqvist was superb as Viggo.  Ian McShane, John Leguiziamo, and Lance Reddick were all very good.

  d. Screenplay: 10/10 For a revenge movie, this was a fine script.  The direction and the plotlines certainly raised my hopes that John would succeed in everything that he tried.  Plus, the end of Iosef is something I looked forward to from very early on.  I seldom get that engaged with revenge films.  I loved the humour between old pairs of friends while there were lulls in the action.

Final rating: 8/10


20151026: SciFi Review--Jupiter Ascending

Name: Jupiter Ascending (2015)
IMDb: link to IMDb page

Genres: Horror, Mystery

Cast: Mila Kunis as Jupiter Jones, Channing Tatum as Caine Wise, Eddie Redmayne as Balem Abrasax, Sean Bean as Stinger Apini, Douglas Booth as Titus Abrasax, Tuppence Middleton as Kalique Abrasax, Charlotte Beaumont as Kiza, Doona Bae as Razo, Nikki Amuka-Bird as Diomika Tsing.

Written and directed by:  The Wachowskis

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau:  Before Jupiter is born to a British astronomer father and a Russian mathematician mother, her father is killed and her mother's life destroyed by PC thugs in Russia.  The film jump shifts to the 'present' (our future) in Chicago.  In some impossibly rich other world, brothers Balem and Titus spar over opaque issues.  Within this context, Earth is an extremely valuable bauble to be 'harvested'; this involves genocidal removal of all inhabitants.  Jupiter is at the heart of this, since her DNA somehow blocks all transactions that the brothers quarrel over.  In Jupiter's own life, there is little but hard work, poverty, and lack of mobility.

Delineation of conflicts: Balem owns Earth, Titus wants it, and Kalique conspires behind them both.  Balem is drawn to Jupiter from past associations, but he intends to kill her to free up his harvesting of Earth.  Titus hired Caine to find Jupiter and protect her from Balem.  Someone has hired Apini; this takes a while to become clear.  Jupiter has a lot of lost memories that filter back at odd moments.  Worlds collide when Jupiter tries to sell some of her eggs for cash: her DNA is up for analysis.

Resolution: The conflicts go on and on, and do eventually resolve.  It just takes a long time to get there.

One line summary: Poor script and acting undermine the lavish production.

  a. Cinematography: 8/10 Most of the film is lovely to watch.  The CGI, though ridiculous, is pretty to the eye.

  b. Sound: 8/10 Mostly professionally recorded and assembled into the film.

  c. Acting: 4/10 Mixed bag.  Sean Bean and Nikki Amuka-Bird were fine.  Channing Tatum was terrible.  Doona Bae was even worse than usual.  Eddie Redmayne was onscreen entirely too much.

  d. Screenplay: 4/10 Based on the script, I answered the following questions.  Whom do I identify with?  No one.  Whom do I empathise with?  Again, no one.  Is there a single character that I care about?  No.  Do I care about the fate of the future Earth?  No, this is all clearly fantastical nonsense.  Do I care about the society of ultra rich pampered aliens who treat Earth as a coal mine?  No.  These factors make 130 minutes of film seem terribly long.

Final rating: 5/10


20151025: Horror Review--The Atticus Institute

Name: The Atticus Institute (2015)
IMDb: link to IMDb

Genres: Horror, Mystery  Country of Origin: USA

Cast: Rya Kihlstedt as Judith Winstead, William Mapother as Dr. Henry West, Sharon Maughan as Susan Gorman, Harry Groener as Lawrence Henault, John Rubinstein as Marcus Wheeler, Julian Acosta as young Robert Koepp, Franklin Dennis Jones as Robert Koepp, Rob Kerkovich (NCIS: New Orleans) as Agent Barnes.

Directed by: Chris Sparling  Written by: Chris Sparling

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau: The (fictional) Atticus Institute was founded in the early 1970s to study exceptional persons who might have ESP abilities: telepathy, clairvoyance, telekinesis, for instance.  They find hundreds of subjects, find a few weak espers, and get conned at least once.  Then they meet Judith Winstead.

Delineation of conflicts: West's children still care about their distant father, and are discouraged when the Institute clearly has a bad effect on him.  The Institute staff have great talent, but dealing with an incredibly bad-tempered test subject is quite a challenge.  As they continue to observe Judith, it becomes clear that they are dealing with something besides ESP.  Just what is it?  They call in an expert from the DIA (defence intelligence agency), Robert Koepp.  His presence seems to make it much worse.  Will Judith's ability be diagnosed correctly?  If so, what will the DIA (and DOD) decide to do with it during the Cold War?

Resolution:  The attempts of 1970s science to deal with the supernatural were worth a watch.

One line summary: High-handed DoD personnel fail versus the supernatural.

  a. Cinematography: 4/10 VHS level, 240p, perhaps.  Even on a mockumentary, why?  There is more time spent in hand-held mode than I cared for.

  b. Sound: 8/10 Much better than the video.

  c. Acting: 8/10  Good.  John Rubinstein and Harry Groener are long time favourite actors of mine, and they delivered.  Rya Kihlstedt was quite something as the possessed Judith Winstead.  Julian Acosta did well as young Roepp.  I liked the actors who played Henry's two children.

  d. Screenplay: 6/10 Proceeded in reportorial style.  The motivations were reasonably well mapped out, except for the starting points.  How things would proceed once the military took control made sense, but how Judith came to the early state (when she first entered the Institute) was still murky to me at the end.

Final rating: 6/10


20151024: Horror Review--Altitude

Name: Altitude (2010)
IMDb: IMDb page for Altitude

Genres: Horror, Mystery   Country of Origin: Canada

Cast: Jessica Lowndes as Sara, Julianna Guill as Mel, Ryan Donowho as Cory, Landon Liboiron as Bruce, Mike Dopud as The Colonel, Jake Weary as Sal.

Directed by: Kaaren Andrews   Written by: Paul A. Birkett

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau: The film opens to a short vignette about the doomed flight of a light airplane.  Then we jump shift to the present.  Five twenty-somethings gather to fly to a concert.  Sara is the pilot; Bruce sits in front next to her.  Mel films with her handheld in the back, next to the jock/thug Sal, who steals Bruce's comic book.  Cory is also in the back as the fifth wheel.  Sara is a bit light on experience, but things seem to be going well.

Delineation of conflicts: Rough weather comes up, and Sara is not rated for instrument flying.  Two other problems arise: their total weight is too high to get above the clouds, and Sara forgot to assure that the fuel tanks were full before leaving.  There is a screw loose, which means an elevator fin does not respond to control.  Bruce's childhood trauma about flying surfaces; this involves Sara in a strong way.  Those are not the only problems; the film is qualified as a horror film for some solid reasons. They are not alone in the storm, or are they?

Resolution:  Well, watch the film.

One line summary:  Inexperienced pilot versus monsters from the id.

  a. Cinematography: 7/10 Consistently saturated with teal, even during the long dark sections of the film.  The point of this not clear. Framing and focus were usually fine.

  b. Sound: 9/10 I had no problems hearing dialog, and the background music was a plus.

  c. Acting: 5/10 Better than I expected.

  d. Screenplay: 4/10 There's a good 15 minutes of story here.  Hijacking the end story of Forbidden Planet (1956) was discouraging, though.  The plus four was for the ending, which I rather liked.

Final rating: 3/5


20151011: Horror Review--Wolfman

Name: The Wolfman (2010)
IMDb: The Wolfman

Genres: Horror, drama, thriller  Country of origin: USA

Cast: Benicio del Toro as Lawrence Talbot, Anthony Hopkins as Sir John Talbot, Hugo Weaving as Inspector Francis Abberline, Emily Blunt as Gwen Conliffe, Art Malik as Singh, Antony Sher as Dr Hoenneger.

Directed by: Joe Johnston.  Written by: Andrew Kevin Walker and David Self (screenplay).

The Three Acts:

The initial tableau: Lawrence's mother dies during his childhood in the village of Blackmoor.  This traumatizes him; his wealthy father sends him to an asylum, then exiles him to New York.  Years later, Gwen (Lawrence's brother's fiancee), finds him in New York and begs him to return to Blackmoor to aid in locating his missing brother.  Back in England, Lawrence learns that his brother is dead from mauling by an animal.  In this sad setting, Lawrence tries to renew his relationship with his estranged father, Sir John.  This works to some degree, but Lawrence himself is bitten.  He survives, which is unfortunate, as it turns out.

Delineation of conflicts: Inspector Abberline wants to confine Lawrence as a threat to society.   Reverend Fisk would like the unholy acts of the werewolf stopped. Dr Hoenneger wants to expose Lawrence to his professional colleagues as an insane man whose obsessions make him commit heinous acts, not some supernatural creature.  Lawrence wants to stop the effects the full moon has on him.  Gwen would like to help Lawrence, but it is not clear on just how to do that.  Sir John has his own issues with Lawrence.

Resolution:  Well, watch the film.  It's beautiful to behold, and horrible at the same time.  The ending has considerable strength.

One line summary: Even better than the superb The Wolf Man (1941).

  a. Cinematography: 10/10 Excellent filming and SFX for atmosphere and human reaction shots.

  b. Sound: 9/10 The dialog is clear, and the background music is fine for the situations.

  c. Acting: 9/10 Hopkins, del Toro, Malik, Weaving, and Sher were just great in their roles.

  d. Screenplay: 9/10 Wonderful.  The exposition of motivations was rather direct and clear.  The direction and the performances by the actors made the script come alive.

Final rating: 9/10

20151011: Drama Review--Sphere

Name: Sphere (1998)
IMDb: Sphere

Genres: Drama, Mystery, SciFi  Country of Origin: USA.

Cast: Dustin Hoffman as Norman Goodman, Sharon Stone as Beth Halperin, Samuel L. Jackson as Harry Adams, Liev Schreiber as Ted Fielding, Peter Coyote as Harold Barnes, Queen Latifah as Alice Fletcher.

Directed by: Barry Levinson.   Written by: Michael Crichton (novel), Kurt Wimmer (adaptation).

The Three Acts: 

Initial Tableau: Dr Goodman is being escorted out to sea to aid distressed survivors of an airplane crash.  On the way, he sees many naval vessels, which increases his curiosity.  Then he is put into isolation, after which he meets old friends: Dr Halperin (biology), Dr Adams (mathematics), Dr Fielding (astrophysics).  Along with Captain Barnes, they are taken to a facility 1000 feet below sea level.

Delineation of Conflicts:  The site the team is taken to was constructed to study a huge space ship discovered on the seafloor.  The people in the team were chosen to match a report that Norman wrote some ten years before.  Hence Beth, Harry, and Ted all blame Norman for anything that happens during their current predicament.  In his report, Norman had chosen people he knew well for each position in this 'first alien contact' team.  As the work progresses, Barnes has choice words for Norman as well.  Besides the human interactions stemming from past choices, the team has to face the enigma within the space ship, and do their best to survive its considerable power.

Resolution: Working through the puzzle is well worth the time.

One line summary: An intelligent first contact film.


Cinematography: 10/10 Looks professional, which I seldom see.  The use of practical effects, plus the near absence of CGI helped greatly.

Sound: 8/10 Not much of an issue.  This is a movie executed through dialog, not mood music.

Acting: 10/10 The stellar cast delivered.

Screenplay: 8/10 Well done.  The second act might seem a tad long, but the short third act is well worth it.

Final Rating: 9/10


20151010: Comedy Review--Take Care

Name: Take Care (2014)
IMDb: link to IMDb

Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance  Country of Origin: USA.

Cast: Leslie Bibb as Frannie, Thomas Sadoski as Devon, Elizabeth Rodriguez as Nurse Janet, Nadia Dajani as Fallon, Marin Ireland as Laila, Betty Gilpin as Jodi.

Written and directed by: Liz Tuccillo.

The Three Acts: 

Initial Tableau: Frannie has been in an auto accident.  She broke an arm and a leg. She gets incomplete help from her sister and friends.  After too much of that, she appeals to 'the devil'; that is, her ex, Devon.  Devon contracted cancer some years back, and Frannie had cared for him for two years until he was cured.  So she gives him a sufficient guilt trip...and he acquiesces.  His new girlfriend is not exactly understanding.

Delineation of Conflicts:  Frannie's friends do not trust Devon.  Devon wants to get rid of the guilt debt.  Devon's new girlfriend wants his fairly tenuous relationship with Frannie to end as soon as possible.  Devon's feelings of gratitude are a bit limited, but Frannie's sense of being owed (big time) is even larger than she thought, especially when she expounds on all the things she did for him.  Frannie and Devon get the opportunity to be honest with each other, which was not fun for them, but changes everything.  As time progresses, Devon spends more, rather than less, time with Frannie.  How is his new girlfriend going to take that?

Resolution: Well, watch the film.

One line summary: Frannie guilts her ex into caring for her post auto accident.


Cinematography: 10/10 Looks professional, which I seldom see.

Sound: 7/10 Not much of an issue.  This is a movie executed through dialog, not mood music.

Acting: 5/10 I could have done without the actors who performed as Frannie's friends and sister. I liked Thomas Sadoski quite a bit.  Leslie Bibb's role was awkward and difficult.  She did the awkward part really well.

Screenplay: 5/10  I usually do not care for studies in awkwardness, and this is no exception.  Still, the film has a beginning, a middle, and an end.  The exposition of motivations was probably its strong point.  At least this one made some sense.

Final Rating: 6/10