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Donald Cried - Film Review (American Essentials Film Festival 2017)

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A past revisited, for better or worse
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Image courtesy of American Essentials Film Fest

american essentials film festival 2017, donald cried, the bomb, david lynch the art life, documentary, sylvio, len and company, california dreams, mike ott, are we not cats, xander robin, film festivals, movie buffs, movie reviews, film reviews, community event, filmgoers, actors, movie stars, palace cinemas, 20th century women, becoming bond, documentaries, australian premieres, toronto and venice festivals, sundance, world premieres, opening night gala, community event, entertainment, andy warhol's bad, annie hall, barfly, david lynch the art life, eraserhead, the graduate, mulholland dr, postcards from the edge, the untold tales of armistead maupin, you never had it, an evening with bukowski, independent films
Images Electric Chinoland, Rough House Pictures

Starring Jesse Wakeman and Kris Avedisian, the writer-director of Donald Cried; this is 85 minutes of a buddy film gone wrong. Wakeman is Peter Latang, who comes home to Rhode Island to bury his grandmother. It was going to be straight-forward, but unfortunately, he loses his wallet. Having left home 15 years ago and now a Wall Street banker, the only person he could think of to call upon was his best friend Donald (Avedisian) from high school, who still lives next door to his childhood home.

All Peter wanted was to get a loan and a lift to the nursing home to pick up his grandmother's possessions. Donald who has a fascination with Peter, however sees this as an opportunity to force his reluctant childhood friend to hang out and invents ways to prevent Peter from escaping. Complete with a mullet and still boyishly excitable, Peter realises Donald is going to be the irritating thorn in his side and has clearly remained in the past.


Avedisian as Donald, is the only interesting character in the film that'll have a stronghold on your emotions; if only exasperating annoyance. He is well cast as the lanky, awkward, no filter Donald who doesn't understand social boundaries and hangs around like a bad smell. Wakeman on the other hand, just walks around with an expressionless face, injecting a look of annoyance or a smile from time to time.

This is a film of an unwanted past being thrust upon one, complete with dysfunctional relationships. It makes no strong statement. It captures uncomfortable physical confrontations between all the characters in the film, in one form or the other. It reminds us that sometimes the past is out there; it clings to us complete with the drama and humour of everyday situations with a smatter of surprises. It'll either hit you as uninteresting as watching paint dry, or you may identify with the insightful and unsettling emotions of revisiting the past.

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Why? American Essentials Film Festival 2017
When: SYD: 9-24 May, MEL: 11-24 May, CAN: 16-28 May, BRIS: 17-28 May, ADEL: 18-28 May 2017
Where: Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide
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