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Complacent

USA 2012
produced by
Corey Allen Jackson, Steven R. Monroe, Simon Johnson, Dean Alioto, Joe D. Jackson (executive), Clint Morris (associate) for Dustbowl Pictures, Indiesyndicate Productions
directed by Steven R. Monroe
starring Cerina Vincent, Kerri Green, Joey Kern, Keir O'Donnell, Elisa Donovan, Michael Worth, Christopher Showerman, Melanie Monroe, Adrienne Barbeau, Jan Munroe, Carson Durham, Tate Berney, Leif Gantvoort, Allie Smith, Dean Alioto, McLean McGown
written by Steven R. Monroe, music by Corey Allen Jackson

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Sisters Myah (Cerina Vincent) and Beth (Kerri Green) love each other dearly - but couldn't be more different from one another: While Myah's slightly chaotic, lives a moderately hippie lifestyle and has diffuse plans of opening a gallery, Beth is the loving wife to Robert (Joey Kern), perfect mother to Zack (Tate Berney), and puts all of her effort in her white picket fence family life - so much so that when Myah asks her to paint again or at least give her some of her old paintings - she was once an aspiring artist - she comes up with excuse after excuse, but between the lines, it becomes clear that Robert doesn't appreciate her artistic aspirations. It's also that Robert and his and Beth's friends don't take Myah for full and are quick to ridicule her and her new boyfriend Eugene (Michael Worth), an artistic type like herself. And when she brings Eugene for a dinner to her parents (Adrienne Bargeau, Jan Munroe), this dinner ends in disaster, also because her mother is unable to even acknowledge her vegetarian lifestyle.

But not everything in Beth's white picket fence life is quite as perfect as she wants it to seem to be, as Robert on one hand by and large neglects her for work and playing golf, and sees her more as a servant with benefits than a wife, and thus pretty much prevents her from having hobbies of her own. And eventually, at a dinner at Myah's when he gets into an argument with Eugene, Robert shows his violent side. And from here on, Myah starts to be really worried about her sister. But the real tragedy is happening with their friends Thomas (Keir O'Donnell) and Jennifer (Elisa Donovan), whose attempts to keep up appearances only leads to making things worse, way worse ...

 

Now one can't deny that Complacent takes its time to let its story unfold - which is ultimately why it comes across as quite as compelling, as it gives its story penty of room to grow without forcing any kind of message onto the audience, presents us with characters and situations that are at least relatable, and stays away from spectacle to keep things grounded. And a subtle directorial effort and a strong ensemble make this really worth your while.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

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