The Sum of One

Dir: Wayne Dickmann
Starring: Katina Baldun, John Minch, J.D. Murray, Christina Surrano

I'm sorry, have we tuned into the Lifestyle Channel by mistake? It would seem so, going by this woeful relationship movie, which takes a long time to state the bleedin' obvious - people should get out of relationships that make them unhappy. Wow. What a revelation. Several such cases are shown here, to no useful purpose since they duplicate the concept without getting beyond the surface. We see how the couples meet, but not how such obviously incompatible people manage to hook up; even though these relationships are clearly doomed, the director insists on showing us those involved agonising over them in painful detail. It's not interesting, entertaining or educational, and is made worse by some vapid editing tricks, turned on at the beginning and end for absolutely no reason.

Particularly irritating is agony-aunt Deirdre, naturally incapable of putting her own life in order. The irony of this is rammed into our face with overwhelming force, and demonstrates the pitiful level of insight in the script. The actors, on the whole, deserve better, and it's perhaps telling that any interesting moments come mostly from pauses and looks, when they're not having to deliver clunky dialogue. Shot in Phoenix, this possesses little or no local flavour. Indeed, it has little or no flavour at all, serving largely as a reminder that banal, trite and vacuous films are not solely the domain of the major studios.


Zero sum
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