Thursday, July 11, 2013

"The End of Love": A single dad and young actor struggles in a "reality play"

I wondered if a film titled “The End of Love” could be “new-wave” like “In Praise of Love”.  No, this intimate film by Mark Webber presents a number of younger Hollywood (mostly television and independent film) actors playing themselves in a story that might center around Mark, or at least what Mark believes could happen.  I know a few young players, and I find the idea that they would want to portray such a story rather perplexing.  

The film opens with Mark caring for his two-year old son Isaac.  The care is very intimate, and it struck me that I feel incapable giving a total dependent  such attention.  OK, if I were straight and had children, it would be different, right?  Or maybe it’s a chicken and egg problem.

We learn Mark is trying to get a part in an indie film at a table reading of a screenplay that seems to parallel his own world. 

Gradually, we learn of Mark’s other troubles.  He doesn’t tell everyone, but he had lost his wife in a terrible auto accident.  He has been borrowing money from friends (including Jason Ritter from NBC’s “The Event”) and is about to be evicted from his apartment.  In the mean time, he meets another single mom and starts the beginnings of a relationship, but she doesn’t even know at first he has kids.
But old friend Michael Cera  (“Juno”) has a house party, with various parlor games, most of them fun, but unfortunately including a tasteless game of Russian roulette with a weapon, recalling a scene from “The Deer Hunter”.   Afterward, Mark sinks deeper into despair, explaining (with a goldfish in a dry fishbowl as a metaphor) what end of life is about.

Note: Ashton Kutcher once invited all of his Twitter followers to a Hollywood Hills house party -- all one million or more?  As it happened, he missed the weekend I was in LA by just one week.
Some viewers thought that Mark was immature and unprepared to be a father. But most of this quiet film he constantly tending to his young son.
Official Facebook (Variance Films) is here


I rented the film on Amazon Instant Video. It’s $3.99 for three days ($9.99 for Cloud purchase), and free if you play it immediately.  

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