Its 5:51 pm
I got a welcome surprise a couple of weeks ago from film director-writer Jim Heffernan. Some of you may know that we reviewed a short film from Jim and also did a “8 Questions with….” interview as well. Well Jim sent us a copy of his feature film directing debut “The Angry World Of Brian Webster” to take a look at.
I finally got myself into the right mood and settled in to meet Brian Webster and his friends…..
Okay,we’re back……we just finished watching “Brian Webster” and wanted to share our thoughts on the film. The premise is that we meet Brian Webster and his group of oddball family and friends while they try and figure life out.
The main character is Brian Webster of course. Brian is in a deep rut,he wants to make films but seems both terribly blocked and also afraid of failing as his first attempt to make a film ended up rather badly. Brian works at a dead end job,lives at home and his relationship with his girlfriend Lisa ends when he catches her cheating on him.
His circle of friends include his best friend Freddie who keeps everyone at arm’s length with his sarcastic tongue. Then you have Morgan who seems one touch away from being charged with sex crimes and doesn’t like to wear clothes. Gable is a sweet soul who has most likely self-medicated half of his brain away. The one member of this group who seems to have his shit together is Beck who seems amused at his friends who keep tripping over their own life’s mistakes.
Brian’s relationship with his own family doesn’t help him much either as the Websters also seem more at home bickering with each other. One can get why Brian is always in a angry mood,he wants to go forward but has no idea how to get there even he after he gets the map.
Heffernan shot his first feature in a year in Boston. He based Brian on his own life and there are two outstanding scenes that had me laughing,when Brian breaks up with his girlfriend and asks for for his Godzilla 1985 bootleg and later on at Freddie’s house where Beck leaves saying he going home to watch Quantum Leap.
While there are several funny moments in “Brian Webster” and I enjoyed the acting,there were a couple of things that bothered me. First the way the movie was edited,instead of one smooth photographed film,the film was broken up into segments that faded out as the scene ended. Instead of a cohesive take,the scenes came across as a series of improv scenes,rather then a story that flows. While the cast was quite good,I think that Heffernan forgot one key element in a movie like “Brian Webster” and that is make his characters a little relatable and likeable. Other then Beck,I found the other friends hard to like,Morgan is creepy as hell,Gable is a space case,Brian is self-centered and Freddie doesn’t seem to care about anyone. I actually found myself liking Lisa quite a bit,she is probably the most interesting character in the film,hats off to Suzanne Danahy for giving Lisa some real depth.
The casting of “Brian Webster” is brilliant however and Zach Gillette as Freddie seems destined for much bigger things if he chooses to go that route. He has a nice Chris Evans type of look and mannerism in his acting. Chris Goodwin as Brian Webster is also quite good and as a viewer,I was both rooting for him but at the same time,just shaking my head at how cluess Brian was.
Overall while I did like “The Angry World Of Brian Webster”,I just wish the characters had just been a shade more likeable towards each other,a group of friends as tightknit as these should be a bit closer and more united.
It’s clear that Jim Heffernan is a skilled writer and director,this is a solid debut and marks him as a talent to keep a sharp eye on.
“The Angry World Of Brian Webster” has a run time of 1 hour 40 minutes and is rated “R” adult themes and language.
You can order a copy of the film by going here.