DIRECTOR: Dito Montiel

Expected to attend: Actor Roberto Aguire, Director Dito Montiel, Screenwriter Douglas Soesbe, Editor Jake Pushinsky

Separate beds, separate rooms, separate lives: this is the scenario of Nolan and Joy Mack’s passingly affectionate but essentially stagnant decades-long marriage. Nolan performs the perfunctory duties of an ideal husband, bringing Joy tea in the mornings, preparing excellent roasts for their dinner guests, and slogging away every day at a thankless bank job. Intellectual educator Joy remains comfortable in her illusion of happiness, reading best-sellers, planning a Mediterranean cruise, and rewatching the foreign films they’d enjoyed in the early days of their courtship. One evening, after another pensive visit to his ailing father in a nursing home, Nolan spontaneously cruises a seamy boulevard populated by all variety of street workers, very nearly running over Leo, a young male hustler whom Nolan ends up offering a ride, out of guilt (and maybe desire). From these scant beginnings, the two disparate souls become entwined, and Nolan’s lonely house of cards begins to fall apart.

Robin Williams continues to deepen as an adept character actor, offering a fascinating portrait of an unassuming man, long burdened by keeping up an appearance of supposed contentment, who tentatively feels life breathing back into his soul through the complex, often violent, entanglements of reckless obsession. Kathy Baker, Bob Odenkirk, and impressive newcomer Roberto Aguire contribute thoughtful, nuanced performances in support of Williams’ tour de force, presenting a moving depiction of one man’s complicated struggle to achieve an authentic life.

— Leah LoSchiavo

AT&T Audience Award Text Voting Code: F107

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