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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
What He Did for Love
by Betty Jo Tucker

Love of film can be a powerful motivator. …Around, an independent movie gem written and directed by David Spaltro, follows a young man as he struggles to complete film school in New York City despite financial and emotional problems. Although painful to watch at times, ...Around drew me in and held my interest because of its honest presentation and a riveting lead performance by Rob Evans.

Evans (Heavens Fall) is blessed with appealing good looks and a wonderful speaking voice, plus he knows how to make the most of these important gifts. As Doyle Simms, Evans never lets us think he’s just playing a role. He seems to be the kind of actor who completely inhabits the character being portrayed. As a result, we care deeply about what happens to Doyle. We worry when his mother (Berenice Mosca) berates him. Our concern grows when he loses financial aid. And we despair when he decides to make Penn Station his home. But we feel hopeful when Doyle starts up a friendship with a wise homeless man (Ron Brice) and meets a lovely wannabe actress (Molly Ryman) who appears to have feelings for him.   

Of course, we’ve all had our ups and downs when trying to reach our goals. Still, Doyle’s journey comes across as particularly poignant, probably because of his strained relationship with his mother. I believe this dysfunctional mother/son connection accounts for Doyle’s extreme difficulty in becoming the person he wants to be. Oh how I wanted everything to work out for him!

While watching …Around, I felt certain what was happening on screen mirrored someone’s actual experiences. That someone must be writer/director David Spaltro. With this feature film debut, Spaltro has created an indie film of quiet distinction. No car chases, special effects, or explosions mar his impressive and realistic depiction of what one man did for love. 

(From Wandering Cut Films; not rated by MPAA. For more information about …Around, go to www.aroundthefilm.com.)


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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