How To Disrupt a Family
Attention, happy families! Beware of a young, sexy female artist from New York. She might disrupt your supposedly idyllic existence. In Nobody Walks, thatís what happens to Peter and Julie after they invite Martine to stay with them in Los Angeles (where everyone drives instead of walking) while Peter helps her finish an art film about insects. To me, this sounds like the beginning of an intriguing horror or thriller movie -- but no such luck, folks. Itís just a tedious exercise in pretentious filmmaking, and it bugs me even to think about the time wasted watching it.
Still, props to the cast members for trying their best. John Krasinski (Itís Complicated) always manages to be appealing on screen. He plays Peter, a sound engineer who agrees to assist Martine as a favor to his wife Julie, and his scenes involving adding sound to Martineís film come across as the most interesting ones in this disappointing drama. Olivia Thirlby (Dredd 3D) is Martine, the 23-year-old femme fatale, and she looks the part except for her unflattering gamin-like haircut. Rosemarie DeWitt (The Odd Life of Timothy Green) appears quite believable as Peterís wife Julie, a therapist struggling with her feelings about one rambunctious male client (Justin Kirk from TVís hilarious ďAnimal PracticeĒ).
Supporting actors Dylan McDermott (The Campaign) as Julieís screenwriting ex-husband, Rhys Wakefield (Sanctum) as Peterís handsome assistant, and India Ennenga (The Women) as Julieís teenage daughter with a crush on that assistant, are also above reproach here. Too bad they have so little to work with in terms of dialogue and plot. Thatís a big surprise to me, for acclaimed director Ry Russo-Young (You Wonít Miss Me) co-wrote the script with Lena Dunham (Tiny Furniture and HBOís Girls).
The entire film revolves around how Martine serves as a catalyst for change among the rest of the characters -- and not for the better. Her very presence evokes ďlust, denial and deception.Ē Unfortunately, because thereís so little character development, itís difficult to care about any of these people. And we have no idea what Martine is really all about. Like in her experimental film, we hear sound and see movement -- but thereís no soul shining through.
(Released by Magnolia Pictures and rated ďRĒ for sexuality, language and some drug use.)
For more information about Nobody Walks, go to the Internet Movie Data Base or Rotten Tomatoes website.