The Guatemalan Handshake

Film

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>2</span>/5

Not yet rated

Be the first...

 

Time Out says

Mon Jul 2 2007

Were there a middle-American cognate for the Brit adjective twee, it would sum up the feature debut of Rohal, which won a Slamdance special jury prize. Set in Three Mile Island’s shadow in rural Pennsylvania, the comedy is so low-key that if it dropped an octave it would fall off the screen.

After her oddball beau (Oldham) goes missing, a pregnant free spirit and demolition-derby enthusiast (Scullin) jettisons her large family to move in with her erstwhile fiancé’s eccentric father (Byrnes) and 10-year-old best friend (Haywood). Her sister fixes her up with a horny loser (Schreiber) so clueless he buys a stolen 1970s electric-powered Comuta-Car, then swaps it for a dilapidated school bus. As if things weren’t surreal enough, the ghosts of a toy poodle and its disconsolate owner (Kennedy) hover nearby.

Fortunately the behavioral tics are mitigated by Richie Sherman’s seductive cinematography. It’s rare for a microbudgeted indie to be shot in widescreen 35mm, but Rohal began squirreling away stock ends a year prior to shooting. The resulting ambience evokes those summer vacations spent visiting country relations, or driving the side roads off interstates: swimming holes and carnivals; neighbors who know everything about each other but little beyond their turf; and lives that sprawl languidly toward a hazy future, until death arrives unannounced.

0

Reviews

Add +

Release details

Cast and crew

Cast:

Franck Saint-Cast, Will Oldham, Sheila Allen, Chris Haywood, Ken Russell, Nancy Schreiber, Kathleen Kennedy

Director:

Todd Graff

Users say

0
<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5
LiveReviews|0
1 person listening