A Kind of Wonderful Thing – The Review
The red carpet has been walked, the film was shown. Now the carpet has been put away, the after party has been thrown. Now (for me) it’s time to digest and review the film.
I was really unsure what I was going to see with A Kind of Wonderful Thing. I do enjoy the lower budget, “indie” films that I have watched, but the ones I’ve seen have all been on DVD. They were picked up by somebody, and distributed. Someone out there in the industry saw something in those previous films that they liked enough to release them, and allow more people to see them. A Kind of Wonderful Thing, has not been picked up by a studio. It has no one pushing it other than the film’s own producers and cast. Does that mean that this is just going to be a bunch of kids throwing something together and filming it in their backyards and in their spare time? I mean, come on, I even had a bit part in the movie, so how serious can it be? Well, I’ll tell you, it was very serious. The amount of work that this crew put into first making the film, and second making premiere night go smoothly was incredible.
The film focuses on Anna (Erica Sherwood) a young girl who survived an automobile accident as a child that took the life of her father. This accident changed her life in so many ways. Her older sister Sarah (Beth Moore) wishes that Anna was the one who died and not their father; and their mother falls into alcoholism and depression. As we catch up with Anna in the present day, her sister still seems to hate her, and is getting married to Richard (Ralph de Groot) a man with two children. Her mother has recovered but is too preoccupied to pay her daughter much notice. Her brother Josh (Brad Moore) has just returned to town for Sarah’s wedding, and has taken up a lounging position on Anna’s couch. A handsome new neighbour has appeared next door, and Anna has not only fallen under his spell, but also into the habits of her mother as she tries to drink away her troubles. Troubles compounded by the fact that she has just learned she has cancer and really can’t afford to continue paying her medical bills.
The film itself was I believe almost two years in the making to get it from paper to screen. This film was shot in various locations around the town of St. Catharines, Ontario; my hometown; so it was a little odd seeing buildings and places I’ve been on the big screen. It was also odd to see people that I actually knew on the big screen. One actor I’ve known since 1985, but tonight on the screen he was not the guy I knew from high school; he was “Richard”. The acting overall was quite good, and A Kind of Wonderful Thing really turned out to be a “wonderful” film experience. The film was well written, with a solid enough story, but what I liked the most was the dialogue. I found it to be very real. It was serious, it was heartfelt, and it was cleverly witty enough at just the right times to strike an excellent balance. There was a lot of music throughout A Kind of Wonderful Thing, and the soundtrack was pretty much right on from start to finish. I’ve said it before in these reviews of mine, and I’ll say it again now, I really know nothing about music. I have no idea what is “hip” or “now”…as is probably evident by my uses of the terms “hip” and “now”…but I have started to notice the music in films a lot more since I’ve decided to review. There was one song at the end of the film that I rather kind of liked, but of course having virtually no musical knowledge outside of Elvis and The Beatles ,I could not name it. Hopefully one of the cast or crew will be reading this and could fill me in (via the comments section would be awesome), what the “ghost” song was at the end? Perhaps?
I must say that the crew did a wonderful job all around. Not only did they film, edit, write, and act; but they promoted and created the whole “red carpet” experience that I (and about 400 others) enjoyed tonight. My hat goes off to them all. This was certainly an experience I would like to have again. Nearly everyone in the audience had at least a slight connection to the film, by friends, family or whatever; but what was more important, was that everyone in the audience was there to see a film. We were there to see a film and to enjoy a film. To appreciate the work that went into it, and to enjoy the success of the film as much as the creators would. This is what it means to support your local artistic communities. If you ever have the chance to see a movie premiere, an advance screening, to walk a red carpet; big budget, small budget, no budget, big name stars or just the people down the street, it doesn’t matter; I urge you to do it. Experience it. You will get to meet some fascinating people, and gain tremendous insight. I know that the director had said that A Kind of Wonderful Thing was going to be shopped around to various festivals, and I for one have my fingers crossed for them. Not only would it mean tremendous success for the filmmakers, but it may give a few of you a chance to see this wonderful film, that I am proud to say that I got to be a small part of.
St. Catharines Standard Article about the film premiere.
Posted on 12-08-06, in 4.5 Star, Movie Reviews and tagged 4.5 star, A Kind of Wonderful Thing, Arlene Copland, Beth Moore, Brad Moore, Brock University, Edward Balli, Erica Sherwood, independent film, Jason Lupish, Jay Lupish, Melody Sargent, Niagara, Niagara Region, Ontario, Open Concept Films, premiere, Ralph DeGroot, Red carpet, St. Catharines, Tiffany Browne. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.