Have you ever sat around and wondered to yourself if your life was a movie, something that was being recorded from all angles and edited together once you go. For anyone who has ever thought about that this film is for you because it is all about that concept. I honestly bought this movie based on the fact that Ted Raimi is in it, and even though I was sure it was possibly only a cameo I still had to have it. Thankfully not only is he in the film for a good portion of it he is also a part of a huge moment, and to my surprise the film is also really good. The film while it does touch on many things is really all about the bond between a father and son regardless of whether or not they were together, and about love between two people who were destined to be no matter what got in the way and how long it took.
The story is about a famous movie director that has made a very good living and is nearing his curtain call, the thing is he has no one to leave his empire to because he abandoned his son and the child's mother many years ago. As his time grows closer second by second a friend of his shows up that just so happens to be a dead friend of his, this man it turns out runs the movie theater in heaven. He is in charge of putting people's lives on movie reels and editing them down into the most important parts of their life. It is here that the dying filmmaker is given the opportunity to watch three reels taken from his long lost son's life. These reels take us on three different journeys through the young man's life, each dealing with him and his true love and the difficulties that they face.
The first story is his son in his teenage years as a geeky kinda kid who is the outsider, the cool kids just ignore or pick on him ala every teen movie ever. The difference is this feels real and since it is life as a film it is kind of a play on that very concept. The young lad is in love a girl who guess what is one of the cool kids and even though he does every thing he can think of for her she turns him down, at first. The story unfolds and plays out in a very different way then you would think, I thought it was going to go a whole different route. The second reel follows the young man who is now in his thirties, lost and has no clue who he really is, in fact he is planning a trip to Egypt to find him self. It is her that a crazy actor wannabe is his boss and sends him on a trip to find some girl for him, he wants her at his extravagant play. It is here that a long lost love is found but it is also here that emotion, betrayal, sex, and murder create one of the most entertaining sections of the film. Then the final reel is shown as a man now in his thirties is no longer lost as far as him self but he is lost with out that one person who he feels for like no other. This is possibly the best of the three reels we are allowed to see, as he searches for the one that not really gets away all the time as she really gets taken away. This is the reel that also matters the most as it is the reel that helps a father see the error of his ways and is given one last chance to make things right. I know that sounds sappy but when you watch it plays out so well.
Director/co-writer/and star Michael Goorjian deserves all the props any one could ever get, he did an outstanding job. This guy after writing it with his friends shot the first reel with his money and used it to get money for the second reel, then he used that to finance the final reel. Of course when that was all done he used that to get Kirk Douglas and shoot the rest of the film. Now aside from that he also starred as Kirk's son in the film and does a marvelous job, he brings something new to the character with each reel while at the same time keeping him the same lost lonely guy. At the same time Kirk Douglas was outstanding as the father who longed to know his son but did not know how to, Douglas in what I believe was his last role brought a some what sad feel to the film that another actor may not have been able to. Karen Tucker did a great job as Goorjian's lost love and makes the film stand out with a performance that borders on brilliance. Bryan Cranston appears as well in the final reel and does a great job as the one guy who ever reached out to Kirk's son, but it may be Ron Marasco who steals the show as far as the supporting cast goes. He plays Stan the guy who comes to show Kirk the reels and he gives a wonderful performance that to me could have warranted a best supporting actor nod. Of course I would not have this film at all if it were not for Ted Raimi who as expected does an excellent job in the second reel, thankfully he was in the film for a good amount of time. He plays a role in the film that ends up being very significant and throws Michael's character directly into reel three.
Michael A. Goorjian, Tressa DiFiglia, Chris Horvath, and Ron Marasco did a great job with the script as they have crafted one of the best independent films I have had the pleasure of seeing [full of emotion, redemtion, and even action]. Michael did a great job directing this feature as it moves smoothly and never feels forced at all. This is a wonderful film that I really feel everybody would enjoy with out a doubt, it is Douglas's last performance that should warrant at least a rental. Go into this knowing you are about to be taken on a marvelous journey through the human spirit.
One of the best independent films I have had the pleasure of seeing [full of emotion, redemtion, and even action]. Michael did a great job directing this feature as it moves smoothly and never feels forced at all. This is a wonderful film that I really feel everybody would enjoy with out a doubt, it is Douglas's last performance that should warrant at least a rental. Go into this knowing you are about to be taken on a marvelous journey through the human spirit.
Pros: Kirk Douglas back on the screen Cons: none for me The Bottom Line: "Backed up against a wall of confusion Living a life of illusion" ~Joe Walsh Life can often throw you some curves but, as we learn in this film, much of life is nothing more than an Illusion. This was a well paced film that took director Michael A. Gooriian over 6 years to get on the market and he felt that the crowning … more
I basically am just a normal person obbsessed with Mixed Martial Arts, pro wrestling, movies of all kinds, music of all kinds, books of all kinds, and of course foods of all kinds. Just trying to keep … more
Consider the Source
Use Trust Points to see how much you can rely on this review.
An elderly Kirk Douglas shines in this role as famed Hollywood director Donald Baines, who is nearing death and reevaluating his life. What troubles him most is the son he abandoned and never knew. As he slips into sleep, Baines is shown a film of his son's painful journey through life, which is marked by the absence of his father. But in the film's moving conclusion, Baines is offered the opportunity of a lifetime--to set things right.