Friday, April 28, 2017

DAY 10 Tribeca 2017: In 'Take Me," Is It All a Role or Is It the Real Deal? You Decide ... ‘The Lovers’ Takes Its Sweet Time, All the More Reason to Commune With Debra Winger

Taylor Schilling is either a thrillseeker or a hostage in "Take Me."


you are a thrillseeker or in need of alternative therapy to cure what troubles you, Ray is your guy.

He provides kidnapping/abduction services, usually up to eight hours. That is the premise of "Take Me,” director and star Pat Healy’s offbeat black comedy. It continues its world premiere run at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival tonight.

Ray has recently moved his business from Atlantic City (declining economy) to his boyhood home of Van Nuys California (free board in his boyhood home).

The business is floundering but looks like it is about to take off when Ray books a new client (Taylor Schilling.). The unnamed mystery woman wants to be abducted for the weekend. This is irregular, but Ray is broke and Anna is flush with $5,000 - half paid up front.

"Take Me," heretofore plodding and frankly boring, begins to gain some traction once the abduction is in progress. At first, it is simply silly roleplay that will grow quickly stale. Both actors play these parts well. That is acting to make poor roleplay look like poor roleplay. Looks easy, ain't easy.

But then there is a shift when the viewer will have an internal debate about - informed by TS’s wholly credible performance - whether the abduction is still roleplay or an abduction. One is certain that s/he knows what is going on, but there is that kernel of doubt. You wouldn’t bet the farm that you know what is going on, but you’d bet the chicken coop.

Interspersed throughout "Take Me" is somewhat witty dialogue and good physical comedy that has overtones of "Home Alone," "The Roadrunner” and "Bugs Bunny.”

There is even a somewhat happy ending as a disillusioned Ray is confronted with unassailable evidence that his work has done some good.

Meanwhile, marriage can grow stale, especially if it is not nurtured like the most fragile bloom. Ask anyone who's indulged.

Ask Mary (Debra Winger) and Michael (Tracy Letts) in "The Lovers," Azazel Jacobs’ romantic comedy in the final screening this evening of its world premiere run.

Happily, Mary and Michael do not hate each other. In fact, they like and respect each other. They are simply indifferent to each other. The thrill is long gone, compelling them to seek it out elsewhere. Both are having an affair and plan to leave the other after a much anticipated visit of Joel (and his girlfriend; Tyler Ross and Jessica Sula), the son that they both dearly love. 

About their respective subterfuges, Mary and Michael are going happily and hornily along spending time with their respective paramours, "working late" and pursuing other obligations that demand that one be absent from home when one is actually a dirty, lying, scheming cheater.   

Then, one morning in bed when they are facing each other with eyes closed, quite inadvertently Michael gives Mary a peck on the lips. Clearly, he thinks she is Lucy (Melora Walters). Mary gives Michael a peck on the lips. Clearly, she thinks he is  Robert (Aidan Gillen.

Respective eyes jut open simultaneously. Shocked  - SHOCKED to the core - they rise. And scatter. After a short pause, or after the shock wears off, they have a volcanic collision. Of hot, passionate sex.

Some viewers will be put off by the pacing of "The Lovers," for it takes its time arriving at this juncture. Others won't mind. The leisurely pace gives them time to glory in DW doing her thing. What a treat it is to see her on the big screen after such a long absence!

Early one morning a spark between Mary (Debra Winger) and Michael (Tracy Letts) is lit in "The Lovers."

Another joy in viewing "The Lovers" is seeing middle-age folk in love scenes. To be more precise, middle-aged men in love scenes with middle-aged women.

Heretofore indifferent, the spouses are now acting like lovesick teenagers. Texting - and likely sexting -  giving each other goo-goo eyes and so forth. And cheating on their paramours. Immoral! Simply amusing!

When Joel arrives he is utterly perplexed by his parents' behavior. Of course, he believes it is all an act. They excel at pretending, after all. When his confusion overtakes him, he has his own volcanic eruption before he Erin take themselves off.

AJ's slip of a script is irrelevant. The four principles elevate it, transforming  through ease of craft, material that is often pedestrian into something special.

And "The Lovers" boasts an ending that promises more sparks. And possibly a sequel?

Other films/events on today's 2017 Tribeca Film Festival schedule:

“Tribeca: Immersive,” Tribeca Games Opening Night Concert, “The Dinner,” “Whitney: Can I Be Me,” “Shorts: Disconnected,” “Son of Sofia,” “I AM EVIDENCE,” “Shadowman,” “The Lovers,” “Shorts: Last Exit,” “The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson,” “The Divine Order,” “Copwatch,” “No Man’s Land,” “Take Me,” “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: The Bad Boy Story,” “Shorts: New York - Group Therapy,” “For Ahkeem,” “Devil’s Gate,” “Reservoir Dogs,” “The Vietnam War,” “The Eyeslicer,” “Year of the Scab,” “Get Me Roger Stone,” “Holy Air,” “Saturday Church,” “Dabka,” “The Exception,” “Pilgrimage,” “Dare to Be Different,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”

Visit to learn more about it and the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival, including tickets and schedule.

No comments :

Post a Comment

Creative Commons License
VEVLYN'S PEN: The Wright take on life by Vevlyn Wright is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License .
Based on a work at .
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at .